Paul continues his argument, stating the paradox of the power of what others consider weak.
"26 Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. 27 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28 He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things -- and the things that are not -- to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him." (1:26-29)
We're so likely to boast about our achievements before God rather than give glory to him alone. But grace negates boasting. Christ dying for our sins gives all glory to God; we can take no credit ourselves.
Notice that even the definition of "wisdom" has changed from what the Greeks considered wisdom.
"30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God -- that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.
31 Therefore, as it is written: 'Let him who boasts boast in the Lord.'" (1:30-31)
The Greeks -- and twenty-first century citizens -- have their own worldly wisdom, their own list of virtues, their own value system. But in Christ it's all wrapped up in Christ Jesus. He is the author of our:
Q3. (1 Corinthians 1:30-31) In what way does Christ represent God's wisdom, righteousness, holiness, and redemption? How far do these go to lay the basis of a truly Christian philosophical system?
Preaching with the Spirit's Power (2:1-5)As we discussed above, Paul purposely did not attempt to emulate the rhetorical standards of his time in his preaching.
"1 When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. 2 For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 3 I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. 4 My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, 5 so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power." (2:1-5)
Paul declares the things he did not bring to them in his preaching, that he specifically rejects.