July 29, 2020
“When I came to you, brothers and sisters, announcing the mystery of God to you, I did not come with brilliance of speech or wisdom. I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. My speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of wisdom but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not be based on human wisdom but on God’s power.” – 1 Corinthians 2:1-5
Who among us does not love to look wise in the eyes of the world? There is something in us as human beings which creates a desire to know all the answers and win all the debates. This natural human desire tends to do something very strange in Christians. We begin to act as if our demonstration of great knowledge will somehow make everyone impressed with Jesus. If we have all the right answers about all the worldly issues of our day, then surely people will come to know Christ, right? No. This problem has always existed, but I have seen it spread like wildfire in the age of the internet.
If we were to look at the New Testament and try to pick out the wisest, most learned man who could win any argument that came his way, most of us would choose the Apostle Paul. Now, in New Testament times, the city of Corinth was the largest and wealthiest city of the day. This would be the perfect place for Paul to show up and amaze the people with his incredible knowledge and ability to debate the most intelligent men of his time. But that is not at all what Paul did. Paul says that when he came to Corinth, he claimed to know nothing except for “Jesus Christ and him crucified.” Why? Paul goes on to say in the following verses that their earthly wisdom was no wisdom at all, because it rejected Jesus. So, Paul did not bother with trying to demonstrate that kind of worldly wisdom. He instead simply spoke the Gospel and showed the fruit of the Holy Spirit in his life – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
The greatest wisdom that exists is a knowledge of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins, and acceptance of that truth for your salvation. If you cannot win a single argument, but you share Jesus and demonstrate the power of the Holy Spirit in your daily life, then you hold a greater wisdom than all the scholars of the world combined! So, don’t waste your time and energy trying to be right about everything. Simply be right about this one thing and share it with the world.
Loving and Mighty Father, remove from us the prideful desire to look brilliant in the eyes of the world and fill us with a desire to share the Good News of Jesus Christ through our words and our actions every day and in every situation.
In Christ’s Service,
Pastor Shane Cannon