30 Days in the Bible, Day 5: 1 Corinthians 1:17-25
Christians are often thought by those in the world to be somewhat simple and foolish. While others chase after what “science” tells them, or search for some new and novel way of thinking, or pursue new combinations of ideas no one else ever thought of, Christians rest in a faith that is thousands of years old. While every generation finds new ways to apply the truths of the Bible to their contemporary lives, and seeks new ways to present the eternal truths of God to those around them, the core elements of the Christian faith do not change.
Or perhaps I should say those truths should not change. There are many who call themselves “Christians” who have abandoned the Word of God, orthodox teaching, and even Jesus Christ as the incarnate Son of God. They prefer the acclaim and appreciation of those in their world to the approval of the God who wrote Scripture. Many would rather follow the current thoughts of a sinful world than be thought of as “narrow-minded” or “old-fashioned” in their faith.
To our world, the truth of God is seen as foolishness. Paul encountered this already when he wrote to the Corinthians about AD 54-55. Christianity was only about 20 years old when it was attacked for its “foolish” teaching about the cross of Christ. To the cultured Greco-Roman world, a dead criminal could hardly be considered any kind of a god, much less the ultimate God above all gods. The wisdom of the Greek philosophers didn’t have any place for a teaching such as this.
Sadly, our own world thinks of Jesus in much the same way. The death of Jesus is accepted, but the Resurrection is not. Thus the cross is just the way a good man and great teacher died. The idea that Jesus was and is truly God is rejected out of hand. The world wants to put Jesus in a box which people can understand, and make him into something with which we are familiar, rather than accepting Him for who He really is.
Even inside of the church, people try to make Jesus acceptable to the world. A recent controversy involving a prominent evangelical college found a professor at the school claiming that Christians and Muslims worship the same God. She overlooked the fact that Muslims reject the divinity of Jesus, and so do not worship Him as God. Sadly, other teachers at the school sided with her, and urged she be kept on the faculty! To them, it was more important to be seen by those outside as tolerant and open-minded than to remain true to Christ.
If we hold fast to the Bible, and to the Savior revealed there, we will be seen by the world in a negative light. Our own intellect and wisdom will be called into question. The questions we must answer is this: are we more interested in pursuing human wisdom, or the wisdom of God? Do we want a Jesus that the world applauds, or one who judges that world? Are we willing to be thought fools by those who think they are wise, so that we might gain the true wisdom that comes through Jesus Christ? The way you answer will show where you believe wisdom lies.