Foolish Preaching, Part 2of2, Pastor Phil Sessa

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1Corinthians 1:19, “For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent”

“Imagine for a moment that you are standing on the seashore gazing at a large ocean liner. The sun is shining. There is no wind and the sea is calm. To your amazement, about thirty people suddenly dive off the end of the ship and cling to a lifeboat. You shake your head in disbelief at their foolishness. Then without warning, the great ocean liner strikes an iceberg and suddenly sinks, taking all on board with it. Those who looked like fools in abandoning the ship were actually wise, and those who seemed wise by staying on board were, in truth, fools. The world scoffs at those who abandon the ship of this world and cling to the lifeboat of the Savior. But Christians know that this great pleasure-cruiser will eventually come into contact with the immovable iceberg of the Law of God, sink into hell … and take all those on board with it (The Evidence Bible).”

Recently we examined the verse, “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but to us which are saved it is the power of God”, Now Paul introduces a quote from the Prophet Isaiah (29:14),Therefore once more I will astound these people with wonder upon wonder; the wisdom of the wise will perish, the intelligence of the intelligent will vanish.” Paul is showing that God dismisses the wisdom of men as a means of salvation. These people were giving God lip – service but their hearts were not converted. In vs. 13 Isaiah says, “The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is made up only of rules taught by men. Man-made precepts and mouthing of words for salvation”, Isaiah 29:13, will not move the heart of God. He will set aside man’s wisdom and understanding as a means of finding favor with him. God makes two promises that Paul has written:

First, “…I will destroy the wisdom of the wise”. Humanity cannot strive for salvation through their wisdom. If humanity thinks for a moment that God can be swayed by the wisdom of man, God will destroy that wisdom, and show it to really be the foolishness of humanity. In Matthew 16, Jesus is speaking with His twelve and asks, “Who do you say that I am?” Peters answers Him saying, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus responds to Peter saying, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven.” It was not man’s wisdom that led Peter to this knowledge, but rather revelation from the Lord. David the Shepherd slayed Goliath the Warrior, as God destroyed the wisdom of man.

Secondly, “…I will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent”. God has a way of crushing the understanding of the prudent. Jesus confounded the Jews, He was the Messiah that most of them missed, and they couldn’t understand who Jesus really was. Now most of the Jews follow the word of man, instead of the Word of God. God calls us to preach His Word, which may be foolish to many, but God uses His Word that we preach to bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Romans 3:19 reads, “Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God.” There is no escape, no matter how intellectual someone may think they are. Not submitting to the Lord is complete foolishness. How is your submission factor? Are you preaching His Word, despite the fact you may look foolish to the world?

Until the nets are filled…Blessings, Pastor Phil

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