1 Corinthians 1
1 Corinthians 1:1 Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, 1:2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: 1:3 Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul specifically addresses the saints at Corinth however these instructions are applicable to ALL of the saints everywhere and for our day as well. He begins by complementing them and immediately launches into criticism of some things which are a massive problem in today’s spiritual Ekklesia.
1:4 I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; 1:5 That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge; 1:6 Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: 1:7 So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: 1:8 Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1:9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
Paul thanks God the Father who called out those who are Pillars of Faith; because he has enriched us in the knowledge and understanding of the Word of God; so that we may be blameless at the resurrection. God is faithful to keep his promises: If we are faithful to him.
Christ is confirmed in us by our faithfulness to keep God the Father’s Word.
If we remain faithful to God in zealously keeping his Word, we shall not lack for any necessary spiritual gift and our development in the faith will not be hindered.
1.10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing [everyone should be speaking the same Word of God and the doctrine that Christ taught], and that there be no [doctrinal] divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind [the mind of Christ] and in the same judgment [as God’s Word].
Doctrinal unity and unity with God the Father and Jesus Christ are all important. To compromise with doctrine or to tolerate false doctrine for the sake of organizational peace is an abomination which separates us from God.
1:11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you. 1:12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.
1:13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul? 1:14 I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius; 1:15 Lest any should say that I had baptized in mine own name. 1:16 And I baptized also the household of Stephanas: besides, I know not whether I baptized any other. 1:17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words [not with deceitful or clever words], lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.
Brethren: Do not let people use clever arguments to trick you into believing that Christ will tolerate sin and so turn the sacrifice of Christ into a license to remain in sin.
Is this not the state of affairs in the “Christian” world today? Everywhere men follow other men AWAY from God! Most follow the false traditions of men away from living by the Word of God. They may pay lip service to Christ or God the Father, but they DO NOT live by every Word of God! They even say “live by God’s Word” in order to deceive people, as they then insist that they be blindly obeyed without question,
Paul condemns this following of men declaring that the faithful called out are all brothers and children of the SAME FATHER. We must all learn to put our Heavenly Father: FIRST!
Men can be a great help, yes they can: even as Paul was a great help and remains a help for us today! That does not mean that we should not continually prove that elders and officials are being faithful to Almighty God!
Yes; we should check, check, check; and prove, prove, prove: all things by the Word of God (1 Thes 5:21, 1 Cor 11:1, Acts 17:11, John 5:39, Mat 4:4).
It is God the Father who should always come FIRST. Elders and officials are only elder brothers who are responsible for focusing each of us on God our Father.
If they try to focus us on themselves or their organizations; if they compromise with God’s Word; if they exalt themselves: Almighty God will deal with them! And if we follow them in their error: WE SHALL ALSO BE CORRECTED!
God the Father will not tolerate disobedient children and Jesus Christ will not tolerate a rebellious bride.
1:18 For the preaching of the [Sacrifice of Christ] cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved [delivered from the power of sin] it is the power of God.
1:19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the [worldly] wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. 1:20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by [worldly] wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching [the wisdom of God is foolishness to the worldly] to save them that [have faith in God] believe.
1:22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: 1:23 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks [the worldly, then and now] foolishness [beyond their understanding]; 1:24 But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. 1:25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than [God is much wiser than the understanding of carnal man] men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
1:26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, [worldly great] are called: 1:27 But God hath chosen the foolish things [those that are ignorant of worldliness] of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; [so that no flesh should glory in itself; and so that all men would eventually understand that all glory belongs to God alone] 1:28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not [most of the godly are nothing in this society], to bring to nought things that are: 1:29 That no flesh should glory in his presence. 1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: 1:31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
Those steeped in worldliness will consider the wisdom of God to be foolishness and will not respond positively to it. Therefore God must call out those ignorant in worldly wisdom who will respond positively to the wisdom of God.
No man can say that he understood the things of God by his own efforts. Understanding is the gift of the Holy Spirit which guides into all truth and provides us with understanding of the things of God.
God does not call many worldly wise in this society lest they become vain and proudly self-righteous; falsely thinking that they have understood and become righteous by their own efforts.
God calls the poor in the spirit of pride, self-will and rebellion against God, who are contrite of heart, the humble before God; because they will exalt their God.
Those who exalt themselves will be abased in due time, so that being humbled they too can be saved. It is the spirit, the very mind and nature of God dwelling in us which gives us the wisdom, righteousness and sanctification of God!
Jesus Christ dwelling in us through the Holy Spirit; will empower us to obey God the Father [as Jesus Christ did and does] and such obedience will be rewarded with the gift of even more understanding!
The wise of this society think that obeying God is foolishness and will not obey God’s Word. Therefore they cannot receive the Holy Spirit which gives understanding until they have been humbled.
The Spirit of God is the wisdom, truth and mind of God; and the Word of God defines God’s mind and nature; therefore if we reject any zeal to live by every Word of God, we are rejecting God and God’s Spirit!
If we refuse to DO what is godly; we are rejecting the very nature and Spirit of God!
The leaders and elders of the various Assemblies who reject Nehemiah because they want to pollute the Sabbath are rejecting a part of the very mind of God! They are rejecting the Spirit of God!
When we Prove All Things and hold fast only to what God has proclaimed in his Word; then we are building the nature of God within ourselves!
When the brethren do as the men over these organizations tell them to do, contrary to any part of the whole the Word of God; we are exalting such men over God’s Word; which is IDOLATRY and spiritual ADULTERY against our espoused Husband Jesus Christ!
Idolatry and adultery are forbidden by God’s law, and if we do what men say instead of what God commands; we are rejecting the very nature and mind of God! We are rejecting Almighty God and God’s Spirit, to follow idols of men!
1 Corinthians 2
1 Corinthians 2:1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with Excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. 2:2 For I determined not to know [teach] any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. 2:3 And I was with you in weakness, and in fear [for their/our welfare], and in much trembling. I came among you not to impress [impress anyone] with my learning and fine rhetoric, but in all humbleness to teach Jesus Christ!
2:4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: 2:5 That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.
Paul writes that he did not teach the wisdom of men, rather he taught the wisdom and power of God.
2:6 Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: For the wisdom of men is foolishness in comparison to the wisdom of God. 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
The hidden mysteries of God are revealed to God’s faithful, so that God can glorify [resurrect] his called out.
2:8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man [the mysteries of God are unknown to men and are revealed by God’s Spirit alone], the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. 2:10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
The Spirit or nature of God, knows all the things of God, for it is the very mind and nature of God.
2:11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
The knowledge of God is a gift of God through his Spirit, given only to those who obey God.
Human beings have a spirit or mind that lifts us above the animals; and God has a greater Spirit or mind than any man, which makes him far superior to the wisest man.
1 Corinthians 2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the [carnal men] world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to [to those who repent of sin and obey God; Acts 5:32] us of God.
2:13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
The sincerely repentant person is given the very nature of God through his repentance, the application of Christ’s sacrifice and willingness to partake of God’s nature; and through the diligent seeking out of that nature; which is contained in and defined by the Holy Scriptures of God.
When we learn about God and keep his Word, we are internalizing his very nature his Spirit; and when we obey him and do as he would do in any situation; we are internalizing the very mind, nature, deeds and Spirit of God!
2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
Spiritual things are spiritually discerned. That is why it is so very WRONG to depend on the teachings of unconverted minds for Doctrine or Prophecy.
To do so is the foolishness of the blind man seeking out the blind for guidance. And many have been led astray and will end up in great tribulation for the sin of accepting the false doctrines of the unconverted.
Those who do not obey God: DO NOT have his Spirit. They CANNOT understand spiritual things and are blind. To Follow them is to follow the spiritually blind and to enter the VERY SAME SPIRITUAL DARKNESS THAT THEY ARE IN!
These groups by learning the teachings and prophecies of the ignorant unconverted; have gone far astray and are standing on their false teachings rejecting the truth of God.
They are rejecting the very nature and Spirit of God, preferring the nature of the spiritually blind.
Because they reject the knowledge of God and mix the falsehood of unconverted error with the truth, creating a polluted false teaching; they will all fall into the ditch and face severe correction.
2:15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, [The godly person questions and tests all things by the Word of God.] yet he himself is judged of no man [The godly person will be judged by God and not by men].
2:16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, [What carnal mind understands the things of God; and what can the carnal person teach God?] that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
The faithful commandment keepers have the Holy Spirit, the very nature of God; if we remain steadfast to obey him and live by every Word of God.