Summary: I believe that a true bible believing church will experience all the promises of God.

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August 22, 2010

Morning Worship

Text: 1 Corinthians 1:18-2:5

Subject: Wisdom and Power

Title: Church the Way It Should Be

OK. Here it is! For nearly nine years I have been here preaching the word of God to you. My goal has always been to open the word for you in a way that you could understand it and build an even stronger foundation than what you have previously had. My purpose in preaching has always been to be an Ephesians 4 pastor, 12to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up…

I have constantly encouraged you all to read your bible and allow the Holy Spirit to teach you what He wants to teach you. I have continually urged you to trust every word that comes out of God’s word. I have taught you not to take one verse of scripture and make doctrine out of it but to read it in the context in which it was written.

I haven’t really taught you anything new. But maybe I have reinforced some things that you have forgotten. Or maybe I have been able to put a different twist on some things because my life, my background, my personality is different from those who came before me.

In all these things all I have ever wanted to do is to make this church better.

Now, turn over to 1 Corinthians chapter 1. I want to show you that Paul had the same desire for the church in Corinth. I am not trying to place myself on a pedestal or say that I am cut out of the same cloth as Paul. What I am saying is that my heart for the church is the same as Paul’s heart was – that the church become the best it can be. And the way for that to happen is to focus on the primary message of the whole bible – Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

There is power in the word of God so today as you listen I ask that you allow this word that I have not just to inform you, but to change you from the inside out.

Read 1 Corinthians 1:18-2:5.

Lord, open my eyes to see and my ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church.

I. THE MESSAGE OF THE CROSS-. As Paul begins this line of thought in his letter to the church, he does so by contrasting what the world thinks about the cross with what the cross has done in the lives of Christians everywhere. 18For 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. What Paul says here is that the gospel message produces two responses? 1), it’s foolishness. Why would God come to earth in order to die on a cross? What kind of God is that? And if Jesus was God and He wasn’t able to save Himself, then how could He save anyone else? Isn’t that the same words we heard at the cross as those who watched Jesus die mocked Him? Mark 15:31-32, "He saved others," they said, "but he can’t save himself! 32Let this Christ, this King of Israel, come down now from the cross, that we may see and believe." If this is a God, then who would want to serve Him? 2) The second response is one of recognition and it is the polar opposite of the first. Humanity could never become good enough to save itself so now it throws itself upon the mercy of the great judge and accepts the power that came to earth to save the world. …But to us who are being saved it is the power of God… let’s look at two words in that last part of verse 18. the word saved in the original language means, “to save, deliver or protect…heal, preserve, do well or make whole.” So when the world looks at those things they say that it is impossible. But the cross has another dimension – it is the power of God. The word power refers to a force, specifically a miraculous power that is evident in the miracle itself. Other meanings include, ability, abundance, might, strength… For those who refuse the cross it is foolishness and it leads to death. But to those who accept it there is a miracle, the ability, the abundance, the might, the strength of God to save, to deliver, to protect, to heal, preserve or make whole. 19For it is written: "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate. Now I want you to remember that Paul is writing this letter to the church. He is reminding them that the message of the cross contradicts… the wisdom of the world.

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