Can Your Faith Stand?
That your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.
1 Corinthians 2:5 NKJV
Human nature is to trust oneself, but Paul was humbled by the majesty of God and immediately realized that the worldly wisdom so esteemed by humankind is foolishness in God’s eyes. Compared to the all-knowing power of our holy and just God, our physical talents, human wisdom, and cerebral capacities are of no consequence.
So, when Paul first arrived in Corinth to preach the Word, he did not dazzle or astound them with his eloquence or superior oratory. Paul’s persuasive words did not convince them. But, driven by the Holy Spirit, he resolved to share nothing other than the gospel of Jesus Christ, who was killed for their sins and risen to eternal life for all who believe.
Paul, who was so accomplished in every facet of human wisdom and understanding, did not rely on his academic prowess and oratorical brilliance to emphasize the futility of worldly wisdom. Paul approached them in a state of weakness, trembling, and terror.
The Lord Jesus renounced His heavenly splendor to express only what He heard from His Father. In the same way, Paul abandoned his human accomplishments and oratory talents to speak only what he received from Christ’s indwelling Spirit.
He sought to demonstrate that there is godly wisdom that comes from above and that God’s servants should only express those things that come from Him-secret wisdom that is unavailable to the world and heavenly truths that are only revealed to those who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul was concerned that these Corinthian Christians, and those who would follow them in the faith, would not be persuaded to base their faith on the smooth-sounding, seductive words of worldly knowledge or the eloquent rhetoric of some great orator as was the custom in those days.
The clear message of the gospel of Christ was basic and direct so that the confidence of these Christians and those who would follow them would not be based on man’s wisdom but on God’s power.
Paul was aware that the world viewed the wisdom of God as foolishness, but that did not prevent him from retaining his trust in the power and wisdom of God
and his ready submission to the Lord’s authority as he preached the simple gospel message.
Paul’s message may have been unimpressive from a human standpoint. Still, the message of the gospel is the power of God unto salvation for everyone who
believes, and Jesus Himself promised that if He were exalted, the gospel of God would be propagated, and the Holy Spirit would draw all men to the Lord Jesus.
The salvation of another person’s soul is not contingent upon us or the stunning words we employ. Simply, we are tasked with proclaiming the Word and the magnificent gospel of Christ in all its reality. It is not our duty to “rescue” another individual. The responsibility for their salvation rests with the Holy Spirit’s work
of conviction in their life. However, we who God’s grace has rescued through faith in Christ have a responsibility to communicate the good news with others as guided by the Holy Spirit so that their faith, as well as ours, rests only on God’s power.
How often do you rely solely on your intellect when you share the gospel with less knowledgeable individuals? Determine that you will ask the Holy Spirit what He desires to do in those moments. Allow Him to guide you as you remain alert to Him.
Heavenly Father, please forgive me for the times I have relied on my strength or tried to persuade people to follow Christ through my persuasive abilities. Help me to share the truth of the gospel of grace straightforwardly and honestly, as directed by the Holy Spirit, so that my faith and theirs may be established on the truth and not affected by worldly rhetoric, to Your honor and glory. In Jesus’ name, I pray.
Upcoming Connect 21 Events
- Sunday Morning Service (Jan 22nd @ 10 am at River Ridge High School)
- Prayer 201 (Jan 25th @ 7 pm via Zoom)
- Saturday Morning Prayer (Jan 28th @ 9 am at Latimer Hall – The Way UMC)