“The Word Of The Cross” ( 1 Corinthians 1: 18, NEB ) by Carley Evans

“God makes the wisdom of this world look foolish.” (1 Corinthians 1:21) “The world fails to find Him by its wisdom, and [God] chooses to save those who have faith by the folly of the Gospel.” (1 Corinthians 1:22) “The Word [doctrine] of the cross is sheer folly to those on their way to ruin, but to us who are on the way to salvation it is the power of God.” Paul therefore says that he “declares the attested truth of God without display of fine words or wisdom.” He “resolves that while [he] is with [the Corinthians] [he] will think of nothing but Jesus Christ — Christ nailed to the cross.” (1 Corinthians 2:1,2) “The gospel [he] proclaims does not sway [them] with subtle arguments.” Instead, “it carries conviction by spiritual power.” Therefore, “faith [is] built not on human wisdom but upon the power of God.” (1 Corinthians 2:4,5) Paul “speaks God’s hidden wisdom, His secret purpose framed from the very beginning.” (1 Corinthians 2:7-8) This wisdom is “revealed to us through the Spirit.” (1 Corinthians 2:10) “This is the Spirit we receive from God, and not the spirit of the world.” (1 Corinthians 2:12)

Paul tells us our faith comes through the Spirit of God, through God’s wisdom which appears to be “sheer folly” to the world. The spirit of the world leads people “to ruin” while the Spirit of God leads those who believe to “salvation.” No fine words or subtle arguments are necessary because the Spirit we receive is directly from God. Paul calls this Gospel “the attested truth of God” which is “Christ nailed to the cross.” This Gospel is God’s “secret purpose framed from the very beginning.”

“[We] are God’s garden. Or again, [we] are God’s building.” And, “there is no other foundation beyond that which is already laid; [Paul] means Jesus Christ Himself.” (1 Corinthians 3:9,10,11)

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