|1 Corinthians 1 |
1 Paul called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother,
3 Grace be to you and peace, from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
4 I thank my God always on your behalf, because of the grace of God that is given you by Jesus Christ;
5 That in everything you are enriched by him, in all utterance and in all knowledge, [Utterance is the Spirit speaking from within a spiritually mature believer, which words you can hear telling you exactly what to say immediately before speaking.]
6 Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you.
7 So that you do not lack any [spiritual] gift; while you are waiting for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ,2
8 Who will also confirm you to the end, that you may be blameless in the day3 of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9 God is faithful, by whom you were called to the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
10 Now I beseech you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak in harmony, and that there be no divisions among you; but that you are perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
11 For it has been declared to me, my brothers, by those who are of the household of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.
12 What I mean is this, that every one of you says, "I am of Paul;" or "I am of Apollos;" or "I am of Cephas;" or "I am of Christ." [Apollos only knew water baptism, so Paul is speaking of water baptism in these verses.]
13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?
14 I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius;
15 Lest any should say that I had baptized in my own name.
16 And I also baptized the household of Stephanas. Besides these, I do not know whether I baptized any other.
17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel, and not with eloquent speech, so that the cross of Christ should not become of no avail.4 [How might the cross of Christ become of no avail? Not through eloquent speech, but if people incorrectly thought that water baptism saved them, then bearing the cross could be thought useless; this has happened in Christianity, whose billions consider the necessity of bearing the cross foolishness and of no value. So Christianity is perishing, and also being blind to the true gospel, is perishing on two counts.]
18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing; but to us who are being saved the cross is the power of God.5 [Those who take up the inward cross of self-denial quickly experience the power of God to begin freeing them from sin. From the Word of the Lord within: "with the true gospel there is ample proof along the way."]
20 Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through its wisdom did not know God, it pleased God by the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe. [The wise of the world, including Christianity, considers the message and hope of the true gospel attained by repentance while bearing the cross to be foolishness, superfluous, and useless; the wise of the world are perishing.]
22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom.
23 But we preach Christ crucified, which has been a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to the Greeks.
24 But to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ is the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
26 For based on your calling, brothers, you can see that of those called, there are not many wise men after the flesh, nor many mighty, nor many noble.
27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God has chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things that are mighty.
28 God has chosen the base things of the world and the things that are despised; yes, even things that are nothing, to bring to nothing the things that are,
29 So that no flesh might glory in his presence.
30 But by him you [who have matured] are in Christ Jesus, who by God is made to us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption;
31 So that, as it is written, "He who glories, let him glory in the Lord."
1 Unto the church of God that is at Corinth, to those set apart by Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all who in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, themselves and us. This verse has typically been translated as "to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus," instead of the alternate choice in Greek of "to those set apart" and "by Christ Jesus." You cannot be sanctified if you are only called to be saints, but you can be set apart, called out of the world to seek Him and to become a saint. Those in Corinth were not sanctified. One believer was sleeping with his father's wife; other believers were quarrelling about whose baptism was the best, Paul's or Apollos'; others were suing each other in the courts. Paul said that the Corinthian believers were still carnal, (fleshly, captive to the sins of the flesh), with envy, strife, and divisions among them, 1 Cor 3:3, which is mutually exclusive with being sanctified, justified, in Christ, holy, cleansed, pure, perfect, or saved.
George Fox writes of when you are sanctified in his writing The Great Mystery of the Great Whore Unfolded:
"a believer that is justified is a new creature, is past from the death which came by sin, and comes to enter into His rest, where there is no sin. He who is the sanctification, is the justification, and so by their sanctification are they justified; it is one and the same, what sanctifies, justifies....Men are justified by the believing, and in the faith and by the faith, and in believing they overcome, and have victory; and there are mortification, and sanctification, and redemption, and justification, all possessed together in the one, which is Christ, and this to the particular satisfaction. "
2 So that you do not lack any [spiritual] gift; while you are waiting for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Corinthians had received the true gospel, had received spiritual gifts, and were waiting for the revealing of Christ within their hearts; when God makes his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ, 2 Cor 4:6. Because that which may be known of God is manifest [revealed] within them, Rom 1:19. And we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure. As they are: as we receive the blessed fulfillment of our hope, even the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,Tit 2:13. And when Christ, who is our life, appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory, Col 3:4. Thus realizing the true hope, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Col 1:27. This is the end of grace, which brings salvation to those as we receive the blessed fulfillment of our hope, even the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ; when to those who persistently and patiently wait for him he will appear the second time, not to bear sin, but to bring full salvation. Heb 9:28.
3 The revealing of Christ occurs on the day of the Lord, which for the seeker, is the journey's end: if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end. Heb 3:6. If we gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 1 Pet 1:13. Jesus said: he who perseveres and endures to the end will be saved, Mat 10:22. And Jesus will also confirm you to the end, that you may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. As Paul said: Now I trust you will understand, even to the end (as also you have understood us in part), that we are your boast as you also are ours, in the day of the Lord Jesus. 2 Cor 1:13-14.
4 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel, and not with eloquent speech, so that the cross of Christ should not become of no avail. How might the cross of Christ become useless?—if people thought that baptism, (water baptism), saved them, then the cross would be of no avail; and is that not exactly what has happened in Christianity? Eloquent speech about the gospel could not eliminate the need of bearing the cross, but as we all know, belief in water baptism can and has convinced billions that bearing the cross is foolishness. Christianity has no use for the cross; they think they have no need of the cross other than for decoration or jewelry. But as the next verse says: to those who are being saved, (actually experiencing the destruction of even the desire to sin within them), the cross is the power of God; but to Christianity, the cross is foolishness and they are perishing.
If water baptism could save a person, then Jesus is not even necessary because water baptism by John the Baptist among the Jews was taking place before Jesus even began his ministry. To bear the cross, to expose yourself to hearing His commands to you, and to obey what you hear Jesus speak to you, is the only way to salvation, which is to be freed from all sin, even the desire to sin.
5 the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing; but to us who are being saved the cross is the power of God. The cross is the power of God to change you to become sinless, to become pure, to cleanse you, to become like him, capable of Him then uniting Himself with you. The power of God to salvation is unleashed by: the true gospel of the true hope, the name of Jesus, and the cross of Christ, which is the inward cross of self-denial. Self-denial begins with repentance: to stop lying, cheating, sexual immorality, oppressing others; to share the necessities of life with others, to forgive others of the injustices done to you. And then you must go to Him. You must persistently and patiently wait on Him in humble silence as you listen, watch, and hope for Him to speak His teachings and commands to you. Self-denial occurs by obeying the Lord's voice instead of your will, (His will, not your will); this is taking up the cross, which is the power of God to free you from sin. The cross is to your will and your carnal mind, which must be denied. Wait, watch, listen, hear, obey... wait, watch, listen, hear, obey..... seek, listen, obey. You must endure to the end, when you see Christ bring your salvation.
Christendom denies the cross is necessary. Christendom calls crucifying your lusts and affection on the cross, foolishness. Christendom claims that believing the cross is necessary, is to deny Jesus having saved all believers through his death. Although Christ's death did pay for the sins of all men, our bearing the cross is not to pay the penalty for our sins; Christ has already paid for that. We don't physically die on the inward cross of self-denial. We suffer, so that our selfish spirit dies on the inward cross to be finished with sin, and then by the grace of God, we receive salvation, the baptism of the Holy Spirit, union with God, and entry into the Kingdom of Heaven, to be there forever.
So because Christendom denies the cross is necessary, which Jesus said at least five times was absolutely necessary, then Christendom is perishing: for the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing. 1 Cor 1:18. To Christendom, the cross has the aroma of death. 2 Cor 2:15-16. But the cross is the power of God to be delivered from sin, to be made free from sin forever, a forever cleansing and perfection.