(1 Cor. 8:1) Is it “arrogant” to be knowledgeable?

CLAIM: Paul writes, “Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies” (1 Cor. 8:1). Should Christians pursue knowledge, or is this an “arrogant” thing to do?

RESPONSE: Paul isn’t writing about all knowledge; he is speaking about specific knowledge. Elsewhere, Paul encourages the Romans for being “filled with all knowledge” (Rom. 15:14). When writing to the Corinthians, he writes, “Even if I am unskilled in speech, yet I am not so in knowledge” (2 Cor. 11:6; c.f. 1 Cor. 1:5; 12:8; Eph. 4:13; Phil. 1:9). Therefore, Paul cannot be speaking against all kinds of knowledge –only a specific kind. In context, Paul is referring to the knowledge of idols (8:1, 7). This specific knowledge makes them arrogant, because they were using this knowledge abusively (8:11).