1 Cor. 1:17 π 1 Cor. 1:19 π Eph. 4:17
“For Christ sent me not to baptize but to preach the gospel; not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect.” ( 1 Cor. 1:17; top )
We are obviously mired and burdened today by religious practices promoting the same two things Paul rejected in this verse of Corinthians. Baptism has been substituted for salvation, instead of the true Christian conversion via the new birth.
Millions of church-goers have been brought up on this non-Scriptural approach to salvation, and most of the rest of church people have substituted preaching with the wisdom of man’s words; neither of these two substitutes were acceptable to Paul.
The reason for these two substitutions to reign in our present believing and preaching is because the alternate route demands that the cross of Christ be the main emphasis of all preaching, which includes a revealing of the individual’s sins, secret and overt, and this is a no-no to most people because it destroys one’s “culture,” self-esteem, pride, jealousy and a host of others secretly embedded in the inner man.
However, without this revelation of sin and a subsequent repentance, we can never stand before God, nor live in God’s Kingdom, nor inherit eternal life: so says the Scriptures.
This decision is by far the greatest and most profound ever faced by mortal man. It’s a question of permanent life or permanent death.
By the foolishness of preaching the cross, God has confounded the wise and prudent of all ages. It embarrasses them; God’s foolishness is wiser than any corporate group of men and their proposals, because the world by man’s wisdom knows not God.
“For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.” ( 1 Cor. 1:19; top )
“...that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind.” ( Eph. 4:17; top )
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