B.J. Oropeza, «Laying to Rest the Midrash: Pauls Message on Meat Sacrificed to Idols in Light of the Deuteronomistic Tradition », Vol. 79 (1998) 57-68
Some scholars have suggested that Paul's discussion on meat sacrificed to idols in 1 Corinthians 8, 111,1 is composed of two separate documents: 8,19,23 and 10,2311,1 form letter B, and 10, 1-22, forms letter A. Unit A is often regarded as an early midrash which was written prior to its present form in 1 Corinthians. This article argues that the Deuteronomic tradition which Paul echoes in 8, 111,1 posits another reason why the literary integrity of his entire discussion on idol meats may be maintained. In this section of his letter Paul adopts the Deuteronomic motif of apostasy through idolatry which is prevalent in the Song of Moses (Deut 32). The language and ideas derived from this theme are integrated throughout the apostle's discourse.
"rock" with the work of Christ. He would have been also attracted to the concept that God is faithful despite the unfaithfulness of his people in committing idolatry. The association between the Deity in Israel's desert wanderings and Christ is affirmed in 1 Corinthians 10,4: the rock in the wilderness "was" Christ, and the apostasy which Israel committed, they committed against Christ (10,9). Likewise, the strong would be sinning against Christ if they failed to receive Paul's instruction (1 Cor 8,12; 10,22).
Christ as the " rock " of the Deuteronomic tradition is viewed by Paul as the one who also provided spiritual sustenance to Israel in the desert (10,3-4) 17. He is no doubt alluding to the Lord's Supper by giving this example, and he later brings out the irreconcilable contradiction of eating at the Lord's table and the table of demons (10,16-22) 18. The "rock" is thus referred to by the author in a milieu of eating, idolatry, and apostasy. These aspects are emphasised in the vices Israel commits against Christ: 1) "Lusting after evil things" (1 Cor 10,6) is derived from Numbers 11, which associates the vice with "eating". 2) Paul recollects the Israelites who committed idolatry before the golden calf, yet he emphasises the eating and drinking which take place at the event (10,7, cf. Exod 32,6). The Baal Peor incident which Paul echoes in 10,8 focused on Israel eating before the gods of Moab and having sexual intercourse with the Moabite women (Num 25). 4) Paul has the presumptuous eating of the strong in mind in 10,9 when he exhorts the Corinthians not to test Christ (10,20-22). 5) Paul may be anticipating the strongs' grumbling about his solutions to idol meats in 10,10. Hence, Paul primarily seems to have food in mind in 10,1-22, but food as it relates to idolatry and craving things associated with the elect's pre-converted status. Israel craved the foods of Egypt in the wilderness, and the strong craved idol meats (10,5-6, cf. Num 11; 14). It is virtually unmistakable, then, that there is a continuum between Paul's earlier discussion on eating meat in 8,1-13 and his later warning against idolatry in 10,1-22.
Finally, Paul may be echoing the rock motif again in 10,13, but this time he relates it more specifically to God. He originally discusses pisto\j de\ o( qeo/j in the introduction to the letter where he praises the Corinthians for their spiritual enthusiasm before addressing the excesses of their enthusiasm (1,1-9). The introduction implicates a number of Corinthian misperceptions which Paul intends to correct in the body of his message, including baptism (1,2, cf. 1,11-17; 10,2; 15,29), wisdom of speech and knowledge (1,5, cf. 1,18-2,16; 3,18-20; 4,18-20; 8,1-2; 13,2), spirituality (1,6-7a, cf. 3,1-4; 4,7-8; 10,3-6; 1214), eschatological confidence (1,7b-8, cf. 3,11-17; 5,5-13; 6,9-10; 9,2410,11; 11,26; 13,9-13; 15), and fellowship (1,10-17; 6,1-20; 10,16-22; 11; 16,10-11.15-18). In 1,9, then, the notions of Christian election, fel-