Message:  In 1 Corinthians Paul was writing to the church at Corinth. After greeting them and telling them he was thankful for them he gave them a stern correction about the rivalry and division among them. It sounds like they might have been elevating the status of the leader that baptized them. I’m just speculating here but I wonder if they felt that their leader was preaching a gospel different or more true than the rest. Does this sound familiar? Paul told them he was glad he hadn’t baptized any of them because of this reason. He reminded them that Christ was the baptizer and he and the others were evangelizers. Their function was not to baptize people under their own name but to evangelize them and baptize them in the name of Jesus. He continued on to tell them that the gospel message and the ways of God look like foolishness to those who believe they are wise, and a stumbling block to the Jews who rejected Jesus. The remainder of this chapter is about God’s wisdom vs the perceived wisdom of the world. Everything about the gospel is counter-intuitive to what our natural mind would tell us is true. The bible tells us that anyone who wants to keep his life must lose it for the sake of the gospel. Our natural instinct is to fight to save our flesh from pain. The bible tells us that if we are generous we will have plenty, but our natural instinct is to hang on to what we have because we are limited in supply. Our natural desire for self-preservation drives us to lie, cheat, steal or throw someone else under the bus, but the bible tells us to give up our desires for this world. There is another world with a higher value than this one. The wisdom of man can’t see this other world. We want to fulfill the broken one we are living in. Those it is true that God blesses our lives here on this earth when we surrender our lives and our fleshly desires, but there is another world far more important that the world is willing to acknowledge superficially, but they won’t accept the wisdom of God in order to attain it. Where this all really spoke to me is in that balancing act we all do to try to live in the wisdom of God, but still try to save face with the world who looks at us as fools. They don’t understand the wisdom of God and that’s ok. We aren’t trying to look foolish intentionally, but we should expect that the world will see us as fools as we pursue God and his wisdom.

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