The Foolishness of God

Corinth was a Greek city. The Greeks were very proud people. They had many great thinkers who were called “philosophers.” They loved to discuss deep questions. Greeks admired men who had great learning. They thought they were the wisest people in the world. But they were not! They were really very foolish. They had rejected the true God. They had become worshippers of wood and stone idols which had no life in them. “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:20-23).

The Jews were greatly blessed by God. God had chosen them so that He could send His Son into the world through them. God blessed the Jews by giving them His Law (Exodus 20). He had sent His prophets to them. Jesus was born a Jew, but the Jews rejected Him. They wanted a worldly king, not someone like Jesus who came to build a spiritual kingdom ( John 18:36). The rulers of the Jews had Jesus crucified (Acts 2:23).

Even though Jesus perfectly fulfilled all that the Old Testament prophets had spoken, still the Jews refused Him. Even though Jesus worked great miracles, which proved He was God’s Son, still the Jews asked for a sign (Matthew 12:38-40). Even when God raised Jesus from the dead, many Jews refused to accept Him as God’s Son! When people are hard hearted and do not want to believe, they will not be convinced, even if someone is raised from the dead (Luke 16:30-31)!

Paul said: “For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: but we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God” (I Corinthians 1:22-24).

In the first century when Paul lived, the cross was a shameful thing. It reminded people of death by crucifixion. Crucifixion was used by the Romans to execute criminals. Murderers, robbers, and those who rebelled against the Roman government were crucified. It was considered a very disgraceful thing to be
crucified on a cross.

When Paul and the other missionaries preached that man’s Saviour had died upon a cross, people laughed. “How could anyone who was crucified be the Son of God?” they asked. They did not understand the Christ died as a sacrifice for ours sins (I Peter 1:18-19). They did not realize that the blood He shed on the cross is God’s means of washing away our sins (Revelation 1:5).

Salvation by the crucified Christ was foolishness in the eyes of men. But what the world considers foolishness is actually a sign of God’s wisdom. We can only be saved from our sins by the blood of Jesus (Hebrews 9:22; 10:4, 10-14).

Today, many think they are too wise to believe the Gospel. They take great pride in human learning, and refuse to accept the crucified Christ Who alone can save them from their sins ( John 14:6). What about you? Are you wiser than God? If not, then believe in Jesus Christ Who died on the cross for your sins!