Thursday 28 April 2022

Bible Book:
1 Corinthians

My speech and my proclamation were not with plausible words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might rest not on human wisdom but on the power of God. (vs 4-5)

1 Corinthians 2:1-5 Thursday 28 April 2022

Psalm 115


Paul’s letter continues in the same theme as in the previous chapter which we considered yesterday. He says God uses those considered foolish in the eyes of the world to confound the wise. Paul reminds the church at Corinth that this was his approach to them. Rather than utilising his previous theological training, he relies on the Spirit.

 A generation ago there was more of an appetite for disputes with those who disagreed with Christianity, or even with the concept of God. Richard Dawkins' book The God Delusion was a hot topic for a while, with many rebuttals offered. The university campus was a popular place for this debate. The discipline known as ‘apologetics’, whereby Christians seek to engage in intellectual argument with alternative perspectives, has a long and cherished place in our faith. Indeed, Paul used an approach like this when in Athens, which is recorded in Acts 17. Some have used a narrative approach to engage others, with CS Lewis’ Narnia books a good example. But, arguing people into accepting the Kingdom of God is not a clearly fruitful approach, important though the arguments are. Too often the dialogue is simply two monologues largely ignoring each other.

 Paul focuses on "a demonstration of the Spirit and of power." An intellectual argument is open to debate and counter arguments. Examples of God at work in the world aren’t so easily dismissed The miracles of Jesus were demonstrations of who he was and is. Demonstrations of God’s activity stand as beacons of light. Perhaps it’s Christians setting up a food bank to help meet the needs of others; or a healing when medical hope was gone;  a life completely turned around; or a committed challenge of injustice over decades. We can easily be defeated in debate by those with sharper intellect and training. But the Christian who chooses to donate a kidney to a stranger because the love of God compels them to do this won’t be defeated in a debate. Their action clearly demonstrates the work of the Spirit in their life and confronts the wisdom of the world.

 To Ponder:

  • Where have you seen God clearly at work in your life?
  • Where have you seen God clearly at work in the world around you?


Gracious God, may your light shine through me and reveal something of your glory to all I meet, and may I see you shining through others every day.

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