Tuesday, September 9, 2014

1 Corinthians 3:18-23 -- On Admitting Foolishness and Learning Wisdom

"Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise.
For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.
And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.
Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours;
Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours;
And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s."
1 Corinthians 3:18-23

There are a lot of good things packed in here.  The first idea seems to be that we tend to overestimate our wisdom.  We think that we have it all figured out, when actually in the Great Instruction Book of Life, we haven't even made it past the previews (that's right, we've watching the movie version).  And because we've seen a few scenes in the preview, we think that we know the book, and how it will end, and whether we like it or not. :)  We talk about it like we came up with the idea.  And God is saying, listen.  Take a step back.  Stop assuming that you know what it is all about.  I wrote the book, and the movie version isn't even close, plus you haven't even *watched* the movie.  Instead of assuming the stance of a critic with no knowledge, admit your foolishness and actually find out.  That's how we all learn things we don't know, but we often try to fake it rather than doing the work of learning.
The other big idea that is connected to this is that all things are ours.  That's an idea that is somewhat at odds with our acquisitive society, but since we've already admitted our foolishness today, maybe we should think about how this actually works rather than rejecting it. :)  Compared to moving a mountain with faith or walking on water, probably not impossible.  In one sense, everything is ours because we have stewardship over it.  We need to be taking care of it.  And in another way, with Faith, we can do anything and have anything that God desires us to have... so nothing is out of reach that is essential to our happiness.  In that way, it's really silly to glory in our own wisdom or even in the latest technological discoveries of any mortal person, because God has it all in his hands, including power over life and death and the present and the future.  And if we stop focusing only on the wisdom of this world, admit our ignorance and foolishness, and ask God to teach us some of his wisdom, maybe we'll understand more and become more than we ever could otherwise.

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