The relationship between Paul's instructions to the Corinthians regarding the consumption of meat in pagan cultic settings in 1 Corinthians 8 and 10 and his defense of his right to apostolic support in 1 Corinthians 9 is most often described in terms of a simple comparison: In the same way Paul dispenses with his right to support, so the Corinthian believers should refrain from exercising their right to eat meat. A careful analysis of these two disparate themes, however, against the background of recent sociohistorical study reveals a more thoroughgoing connection that goes to the very heart of Paul's Gospel.

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