STUMBLING BLOCK Anything that causes a person to stumble or to fall. It is used literally (Leviticus 19:14), but most often it is used as a metaphor. It is used of idols (Ezekiel 7:19), of God's work with faithless people (Jeremiah 6:21), and of God Himself in relation to His people (Isaiah 8:14). Paul warned Christians not to let their freedom result in a stumbling block to other believers (Romans 14:13; 1 Corinthians 8:9). The disobedient are warned that Jesus Himself could be a stumbling block (Romans 9:32-33; 1 Corinthians 1:23; 1 Peter 2:8). The Greek word, skandalon, was the bait stick in a trap. It was also used symbolically for the trap itself. It came to mean a temptation to sin or to have false faith.
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.