Summary: There were contentions that is, (quarrels; arguments) among the church at Corinth because they were glorying in human leaders. These divisions in the church at Corinth were caused by pride, for “only by pride cometh contention” (Prov. 13:10).
The Power, Wisdom, and Glory of the Cross
There were contentions that is, (quarrels; arguments) among the church at Corinth because they were glorying in human leaders. Some were glorying in Paul; some were glorying in Apollo’s; and some were glorying in Peter. All this glorying in men led to divisions among the Corinthian believers.
These divisions in the church at Corinth were caused by pride, for “only by pride cometh contention” (Prov. 13:10).
The cure for divisions caused by pride is to reexamine the cross of Christ and the calling of Christians.
The Corinthians were boasting in men because of their emphasis on human wisdom and power. But Paul says that the cross insults the wisdom and power of men. No amount of human greatness is able to do what the cross does. We can never be saved on our own, but only because of the cross.
· Listen as I read today’s text found in 1 Corinthians 2:1-8
1And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. 2For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. 3And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. 4And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: 5That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.
6Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: 7But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: 8Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
The ground is level at the foot of the cross. That is an old saying, but still, when it comes to mankind’s universal need for salvation, it is true.
· I read an article that said at an evangelistic service conducted in London by Dr. G. Campbell Morgan, a hardened criminal came forward to the altar seeking salvation. Dr. Morgan knelt beside him and pointed him to Jesus the Lamb of God who could cleanse him from all his sins, and he who had been a great sinner believed and was saved.
Then preacher Morgan saw the Mayor of the city, a man of high morals and greatly respected, kneeling at the same altar, and to him, as to the criminal, he pointed to the Lamb of God Who alone could take away sins. In humble self-surrender, the Mayor, also accepted Jesus as his Savior.
· And just a short time before this, the Mayor had sentenced the criminal to imprisonment; and there at the altar the two shook hands while tears of joy ran down their cheeks. For the worst of sinners and the best of moralists there is the same Savior.
Paul also reminds the Corinthians of their calling. God has chosen those who are not wise according to the world’s standards, the weak, and the lowly. He did not choose us because of who we are, but in spite of who we are! This is also a humbling thought.
The cross of Christ and the calling of Christians should humble us. However, there is one acceptable boast. Paul writes, “He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord” (1:31).
We should never boast in ourselves or in other men—as did the Corinthians—but we should always boast in the Lord. This will lead to unity, not divisions.
Some one may be thinking: “If Christians are to live together in unity, why do we have all kinds of different denominations? Why don’t we just have one church? Wouldn’t we have a greater impact on the world if we did this?”
In a perfect world of perfect Christians we would be totally unified, and there would be no such things as denominations. But, we don’t live in a perfect world and there are not any perfect Christians on this earth. We have our differences, and this has led to denominations.
It would be wonderful if all Christians could be united together. But we must never compromise the truth for the sake of unity. We must never give up fundamental doctrines such as the deity of Christ, salvation by faith alone, the triune Godhead, and the inspiration, inerrancy, and authority of the Scripture.
The heart of Christianity is the Bible, the heart of the Bible, is the Cross-, and the heart of the Cross is the very heart of God Himself, Who is the Source of sacrificial love. (1 John 4:10; ‘Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us’; ’ John 3:16).’"God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son”