“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligent I will frustrate.’ Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 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…For the foolishness of God is wiser that man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.” (1 Corinthians 1:18-21 & 25)
When we rely on our own knowledge and wisdom we get things wrong: We think we know how to treat people, but we don’t. We think we know what is right for the church, but we don’t. We think we are judging people appropriately, but we aren’t. When we rely on our knowledge and wisdom we miss the big picture, people get hurt and we don’t see the wisdom of God.
In the grant scheme of things, knowledge is easy to acquire, but true wisdom takes time. Wisdom takes patience and prayer. King Solomon did not pretend to know how to rule Israel. He did not attempt to rule Israel on his own. Solomon did not attempt to use his own (limited) knowledge and wisdom (see 1 Kings 5) to lead people. But Solomon, when asked by God for anything, asks for wisdom to lead. We can learn a lot from Solomon.
We can’t pretend to know how to act in the church without faithfully listening to God. We can’t pretend to know what is the best way to treat people without faithfully listening to God. We can’t pretend to be “wise” without asking God for wisdom and then being faithful in listening to God. True wisdom comes from God. True wisdom sees people on an equal “playing field”. True wisdom does not judge certain people better or more worthy than others. True wisdom is humble and gracious. True wisdom seeks reconciliation.
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.
If we truly want to see and know God, we need to rely on the wisdom that only comes from God. The foolishness of the cross is salvation…to undeserving people. And those undeserving people are none other than YOU and ME. So let’s us give thanks to God for his “foolishness”. Let us seek God and ask for his wisdom. Let praise God always and forever. Amen.