The Wisdom of GodPosted: July 14, 2009 Filed under: Gospel Boasting Leave a comment
1 Corinthians 1:18-31 For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.” Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom and our righteousness and sanctification and redemption. Therefore, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”
1 Corinthians 2:3-7 And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. Yet among the mature we do impart wisdom, although it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to pass away. But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glory.
Man must not boast in any of his own wisdom. For the wisdom of God has brought man to Him, to boast in nothing but Him. The wisdom of God is greater than any wisdom that has, can, and will be envisioned by man. God’s wisdom is so great, so satisfying, and so enjoyable that we should not boast in any wisdom but His.
In American culture today, we have bigger businesses and bigger buildings than ever before. We have nicer cars, nicer houses, bigger wallets, and bigger toys; America has everything it wants. And what do today’s American believers tend to do? They end up buying into this deceitful pride, and boast in the things they own. I am by no means stating that if one has these things, they are not boasting in the wisdom of God. However, I am saying that if one desires these things more than one desires the wisdom of God, that is idolatry, which is sin before the almighty, all-knowing God.
Think about these things: today in 21st century America, people admire your birth and the name that you have made. If your parents are well known, then in most cases so are you. If your social status is high, then you may find delight in your friends. The more friends you have, the more proud of yourself you should be. If you make a lot of money and are well off financially, many people may be your friends because of what you have. Oftentimes, it seems that men value power and authority above anything else. If you are the type of person that gets things done, or you always seem to come out on top, then who does not want to be your friend, and who does not think you are wise? If you look good, sound good, wear the right clothes, and make all the right moves in life, you may look like you are wise. But to this I must say, it is often that even we as believers look elsewhere to fulfill our own personal desires so that we can find delight and boast in our own pride! It seems to me, more and more today, that people – and even fellow Christians – want to feel smart and be known as someone special, and never think about boasting in the all-knowing wisdom of God.
How foolish of man to boast in his own wisdom as if he can know God, without realizing the great fact that God brought man to Himself. Man’s wisdom does not, and never will, find God; nor will it ever begin to compare with God’s wisdom. The wisdom of man does not know the cross, and it cannot comprehend the cross without the wisdom of God, not to mention the inestimable Holy Scriptures. The 63-volume set of Charles Spurgeon’s sermons just begins to explore the “foolishness” of God. Martin Luther’s works, in a massive 55 volumes, just barely touch the edges of the “foolishness” of God. John Calvin’s Institutes and his 22-volume set of commentaries are only grains of sand in the vast amount of shores upon this earth in describing the all-knowing God. The 24-volumes of works by John Owen, the 12 volumes of Thomas Goodwin, and the 12 volumes of Thomas Boston together are only but a hint of the wisdom of God. Every commentary, every systematic theology volume, every dictionary, every encyclopedia, and every book ever written, is but a drop of water in the vast oceans of the Lord’s knowledge and depth of His wisdom. Compared to the Lord’s wisdom, man’s knowledge is foolishness. One of the most amazing benefits of the wisdom of God is that we get to boast in His wisdom which calls us weak, despised, lowly individuals as compared to Him. We are made to boast in this wisdom, and it should be our utmost desire for God to be boasted in – and not ourselves. Man must boast in God’s wisdom, for His glory.