“Food will not commend us to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do” (v8). In antiquity, meat was often offered up to an idol and then sold or served at a banquet. Paul explained that since idols aren’t real, the meat is harmless (v4). Food can’t help or hurt us, spiritually. However, believers who had worshipped idols in the past might be disturbed and tempted to return to their old lives (v7,10). In that case, “if food makes my brother stumble, I will never eat meat” (v13).
“Love builds up” (v1). Our own “rights” are less important than helping one another avoid sin and grow in faith (v9-13).