The “Foolish” Gospel – Part 2 (1 Cor 1:26-2:5)

In our series through 1 Cor 1-4 we have seen how Paul refuses to play the world’s status games. In Corinth he didn’t try to impress them with the kind of eloquent public speaking they esteemed, which had a negative effect on how they perceived him. Yesterday, we saw Paul begin to defend his approach, showing how God refuses to play our status games, too. We see this firstly in the gospel of a crucified saviour, which is “foolishness” in human eyes (1:18-25).

But not only does God refuse to pander to human pretensions. It seems he also prefers to do his work through the un-pretentious. Through ordinary people, who aren’t trying to pretend to be something better than they are.

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Human wisdom and God’s wisdom (1 Cor 2:6-16)

Last week in our series through 1 Cor 1-4 we saw how the Corinthians were divided around leaders, because they were bringing the world’s status values into the church. Paul refused to play the game, deliberately avoiding the kind of showy public speaking they craved. It meant he was compared unfavourably with other Christian preachers, like Apollos. Paul defended his tactic by pointing out that God refuses to pander to human pretensions, and most of the time chooses to work through the unpretentious. God’s wisdom runs counter to human “wisdom”.

And that’s what drives the next section of the letter – read it now (1 Cor 2:6-16).

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