Christian Basics Bible Sampler - Page 15

page 1305 • 1 Corinthians 3
would trust not in human wisdom but in the
power of God.
Yet when I am among mature believers,
I do speak with words of wisdom, but not
the kind of wisdom that belongs to this
world or to the rulers of this world, who
are soon forgotten. 7 No, the wisdom we
speak of is the mystery of God*—his plan
that was previously hidden, even though
he made it for our ultimate glory before
the world began. 8 But the rulers of this
world have not understood it; if they had,
they would not have crucified our glorious
Lord. 9 That is what the Scriptures mean
when they say,
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard,
and no mind has imagined
what God has prepared
for those who love him.”*
But* it was to us that God revealed these
things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches
out every­thing and shows us God’s deep
secrets. 11 No one can know a person’s
thoughts except that person’s own spirit,
and no one can know God’s thoughts except
God’s own Spirit. 12 And we have received
God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we
can know the wonderful things God has
freely given us.
When we tell you these things, we do not
use words that come from human wisdom.
Instead, we speak words given to us by the
Spirit, using the Spirit’s words to explain
spiritual truths.* 14 But people who aren’t
spiritual* can’t receive these truths from
God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them
and they can’t understand it, for only those
who are spiritual can understand what the
Spirit means. 15 Those who are spiritual can
evaluate all things, but they themselves
cannot be evaluated by others. 16 For,
“Who can know the Lord’s thoughts?
Who knows enough to teach him?”*
But we understand these things, for we
have the mind of Christ.
Paul and Apollos, Servants of Christ
Dear brothers and sisters,* when I
was with you I couldn’t talk to you as
I would to spiritual people.* I had to talk
as though you belonged to this world or as
1:19 Isa 29:14. 1:24 Greek and Greeks. 
1:26 Or high
1:28 Or God chose those who are low born. 
1:31 Jer
2:1a Greek brothers. 
2:1b Greek God’s mystery; other
manuscripts read God’s testimony. 
2:7 Greek But we speak God’s
wisdom in a mystery. 
2:9 Isa 64:4. 2:10 Some manuscripts read
2:13 Or explaining spiritual truths in spiritual language, or
explaining spiritual truths to spiritual people. 
2:14 Or who don’t
have the Spirit; or who have only physical life. 
2:16 Isa 40:13
(Greek version). 3:1a Greek Brothers. 
3:1b Or to people who
have the Spirit. 
Divisions in the church
News of growing divisions in the church, reported to him by members of the
church (1 Corinthians 1:11), deeply troubled Paul. After all, he had planted
this church and had spent eighteen months with them (Acts 18:1-11), so
he deeply felt the pain of these divisions. But even more troubling was the
Corinthians’ failure to understand what the church is: the body of Christ on earth
(1 Corinthians 12:12-31). To divide from other Christians is therefore to rip his
body apart. That is why Paul speaks so strongly against disunity, exposing its
foolishness (1:12-17) and immaturity (3:1-23), saying its roots lie in arrogance
(3:21; 4:6-8, 18-19) and in people’s desire to have their own way (e.g., 6:12; 8:9;
10:23). To live with divisions, whatever their root—race, gender, or opinion—is to
deny the cross of Christ, who died to bring about unity (Ephesians 2:14-18).
But because the church is made up of people who aren’t perfect yet, there will
inevitably be times when disagreements arise. So Jesus himself told us what
to do in such situations: Talk to the person concerned—not about them—and if
harmony cannot be reached, then draw in the church leaders to help bring about
reconciliation (Matthew 18:15-20). As Paul exhorts the Ephesians, “keep yourselves
united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace” (Ephesians 4:3).
See also Unity, page 686; The church, page 1348.

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