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Friends in Christ Weekly Message
February 8, 2014
You'll remember, friends, that when I first came to you to let you in on God's master stroke, I didn't try to impress you with polished speeches and the latest philosophy. I deliberately kept it plain and simple: first Jesus and who he is; then Jesus and what he did - Jesus crucified.
I was unsure of how to go about this, and felt totally inadequate - I was scared to death, if you want the truth of it - and so nothing I said could have impressed you or anyone else. But the Message came through anyway. God's Spirit and God's power did it, which made it clear that your life of faith is a response to God's power, not to some fancy mental or emotional footwork by me or anyone else.
We, of course, have plenty of wisdom to pass on to you once you get your feet on firm spiritual ground, but it's not popular wisdom, the fashionable wisdom of high-priced experts that will be out-of-date in a year or so. God's wisdom is something mysterious that goes deep into the interior of his purposes. You don't find it lying around on the surface. It's not the latest message, but more like the oldest - what God determined as the way to bring out his best in us, long before we ever arrived on the scene. The experts of our day haven't a clue about what this eternal plan is. If they had, they wouldn't have killed the Master of the God-designed life on a cross. That's why we have this Scripture text:
No one's ever seen or heard anything like this,
But you've seen and heard it because God by his Spirit has brought it all out into the open before you.
Never so much as imagined anything quite like it -
What God has arranged for those who love him.
1 Corinthians 2:1-10a (Message*)
What is key - rhetorical polish and sophisticated reasoning? No! It's God's Spirit and God's power. What convinces is the evidence of God at work in a person's life.
So be less concerned with philosophical and theological erudition than letting God deep into your very being. It's basically a heart thing not a head thing. Allow the awesome love of God to transform you from the inside out. Then you will be an authentic messenger of Christ. Your wisdom will come from a knowledge of God that's visceral, deep and real, beyond what you can get from any amount of intellectual study.
And God's wisdom - God's reality - is out in the open. It doesn't matter your circumstances. You just need to open yourself to receive it.
* The Message version ©2002 by Eugene H. Peterson.
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Document last modified on Saturday, 08-Mar-2014 17:54:12 EST