1 Corinthians 2 … Consider Nothing Except Him Crucified

Originally posted: 6/10/2020

For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified, (2:2).

Paul continues his emphasis on the wisdom of God as opposed to the wisdom of man and all the various pursuits the world follows in its search for logical answers.

Still concerned with the allegiances given over to their human leaders, Paul reminds the believers, as one of their own leaders, of his demeanor when he had been with them; reiterating his message was not dependent on his own capabilities or strength. Paul sought no allegiance or accolades for himself. He wanted the church in Corinth to know exactly to Whom they were indebted for their faith.

I was with you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling…so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God, (2:3, 5).

Paul’s resolve with the Corinthians, as with everyone, was to know Jesus Christ; and from what he knew, proclaim that which was of most importance, the cross of Christ.

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, (2 Corinthians 15:3).

The Scriptures had revealed God’s plan, predestined from eternity past.

but we speak God’s wisdom in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God predestined before the ages to our glory; (2:7).

And while the necessity for the sinless blood of the Son of God be shed for the sins of mankind may seem a mysteriously baffling solution to the seemingly insurmountable problem, Paul knew. Paul knew that knowing Jesus Christ was the only answer; Paul knew the only hope for all of mankind lie in Nothing Except Him Crucified.

Consider Nothing Except Him Crucified

  • Not superiority of speech or wisdom… Nothing Except Him Crucified
    • And when I came to you, brethren, I did not come with superiority of speech or of wisdom, proclaiming to you the testimony of God, (2:1).
  • Not persuasive words… Nothing Except Him Crucified
    • and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, (2:4).
  • Not the wisdom of man… Nothing Except Him Crucified
    • so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God, (2:5).
  • Not the thoughts of man… Nothing Except Him Crucified
    • For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? (2:11).
  • Not the spirit of the world… Nothing Except Him Crucified
    • Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, (2:12).
  • Not in words taught by human wisdom… Nothing Except Him Crucified
    • which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words, (2:13).

How do we respond to Nothing Except Him Crucified?

Our first response must be faith in Him Crucified. Until we believe we are in a place of desperate need, a place so far from Holy God; until we see the need for His forgiveness of our sins; until we understand we are incapable of earning amnesty from His judgment based on our own merits; until we agree with God and believe His Son to save us; until then, Scripture refers to us as the natural man.

The natural man, the man who has not been born again by the Spirit of God, evaluates everything under the microscope of his own reasoning and rationale. The natural woman will not understand the message of the cross; it will remain a locked mystery unless her spiritual eyes are recreated through spiritual birth when she places her faith in Christ.

In other words, without His Supernatural Spirit, we are absolutely incapable of accepting or believing His Word. The natural man sets himself up as both wiser and stronger than God, as judge over His Ways and His Word.

But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised. 15 But he who is spiritual appraises all things, yet he himself is appraised by no one. 16 For who has known the mind of the Lord, that he will instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ, (2:14-16).

Through faith, we are granted an understanding the natural man simply does not possess; nor can he.

But once we have trusted in Him, our Crucified Savior, for our forgiveness of sins and fellowship with Holy God, how should we respond?

I can’t help but believe, if we follow Paul’s example to know Nothing Except Jesus Christ, and Him Crucified, some things will occur, supernaturally.

  • We will be reminded of our great need for His salvation.
    • There is none righteous, not even one;
      11 There is none who understands,
      There is none who seeks for God;
      12 All have turned aside, together they have become useless;
      There is none who does good,
      There is not even one,
      (Romans 3:10-12).
  • As we remember our great need for His salvation, we will be reminded of the great cost He paid.
    • knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, 19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ, (1 Peter 1:18-19).
  • As we reflect on the great cost He paid, we will be moved in humility to treasure His kindness that leads us to repentance.
    • Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? (Romans 2:4).
  • As we humbly treasure His kindness that leads to repentance, He will lead us in our desire to live by faith, obedience and gratitude.
    • Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude, (Colossians 2:6-7).
  • As we depend on Him to lead us in our faith, obedience and gratitude, He will grow us in His holiness.
    • knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; (Romans 6:6).
  • And as He grows us in His holiness, He will grow us in our spiritual understanding.
    • Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, (Hebrews 6:1).

Faith begins at the cross, and faith grows by the cross.

I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me, (Galatians 2:20).

As we determine to consider Nothing Except Him Crucified, He will be faithful to grow our understanding of what we believe. Consider the words of Charles Spurgeon below:

“The Holy Spirit makes men penitents [repentant] long before he makes them divines [godly]; and he who believes what he knows, shall soon know more clearly what he believes.” Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen, (Hebrews 11:1).

Let us pray for repentant and teachable hearts; that we would daily turn our hearts and minds to know Nothing Except Jesus Christ, and Him Crucified; that we may daily commune with Him Who combines His spiritual thoughts to form spiritual words to teach, interpret, and explain His Spiritual truths. Now that is something to consider!

  • which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words, (2:13).
  • And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual. (2:13 ESV).
  • This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words, (2:13 NIV).

Let’s Grow Together!

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