Foolishness of Preaching

  Paul writes in First Corinthians chapter 1, verse 21, “For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe.”   What is meant here? 
  Paul is making a comparison between man’s wisdom and the wisdom of God.  Man thinks that he is so smart that he can come up with the remedy for sin, reconciliation with God better than God can offer.  Not so.  Who would have thought that through the death of one man, Jesus, salvation could be offered to the whole world?

  Who would have thought that the cross, an instrument of shame and death would become the eternal plus sign for hope?    

  It is not preaching that is foolish, it is the content of what is preached that is counted foolish by some.  The Gospel is the good news concerning the man Jesus.  He was born of a virgin, lived a perfect life, died a shameful death as sacrifice for sin and then God raised Him from the dead to live eternally.  “Because He lives, we can live also.”   What human being could devise such a plan?  So, for those who refuse to believe, it all sounds ridiculous, foolishness but to us who believe, it is the power of God to save. 

  I have thought when preaching, trying to persuade people to believe, seeking, urging, pleading for people to accept Christ, that it ought to be the people who are begging, seeking, pleading God to accept them.  It is the greatest bargain in town.  People ought to eagerly run to claim such love. 

  John McArthur, Jr. writes in his commentary on First Corinthians these words on the subject:  “Paul is not talking about foolish preaching, of which there has always been more than enough.  He is talking about the preaching of that which is foolish in the world’s eyes – the simple, unadorned, uncomplicated truth of the cross of Jesus Christ that allows no place for man’s wisdom, for man’s work or man’s glory.  The wisdom and work and glory are all God’s.  But the blessing they give can be man’s.  It is not through philosophy, intellectual understanding, or human wisdom that salvation comes, but through the believing.  God saves only those who believe.  Men cannot “figure out” salvation; they can only accept it in faith.”  Page 45 
   Really, the thought has to do with wisdom, God’s or man’s.  Is the made wiser than the maker?  How can we even contemplate that man’s finite (limited, imperfect) wisdom is greater than the infinite (unlimited, perfect) wisdom of God. How foolish we are to even think that we are on an equality with God.

  So, what is the wise thing to do? We accept God’s wisdom and trust fully in His word by which we are saved.


















2 Responses to “Foolishness of Preaching”

  1. Such wise words! God is so infinite and perfect and yet we dare to question His wisdom when things happen that we don’t understand. We find it so difficult to trust – but the payoff is beyond words. I hope you and Joann have a wonderful vacation and enjoy your family.

  2. Today an email brought a question as to why there is evil. Why is preaching needed? When God created mankind, he wanted to have people to love and he wanted them to love HIM. He gave them free will so they could choose to love Him. You wouldn’t want a husband or a wife that didn’t love you. Thus mankind can choose to love God. When people don’t focus on GOD, they do all sorts of things that displease God such as lying or stealing or committing murder. They rebell against God which brings about evil. Preaching about God and Christ helps people to see how much God loves them so that they may see the error of their ways.

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