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2
The new wisdom
1So I never thought in coming amongst you to be able by my own persuasiveness, logic or rhetoric to make a message of God, a revelation of the mystery of His being, understood by you. It could never have come to you through such human means as that. 2And so I judged that to know nought but Jesus Christ and him crucified was the way, the only way of this Gospel, which is demonstrated divinely by the Spirit and by power, not by persuasive preaching. 3I was as nothing in myself, only conscious of my weakness, and full of deep reverence and fear, 4yes, even of what I had to say, which could not express itself in clever words; 5and so your faith was built not on any man's personal influence and wisdom, but on divine power and its demonstration. 6Yet it is a wisdom that I speak, a deep and holy wisdom known to the perfect, unknown to the passing world of the flesh, and unknown to the powers that control that world, powers and influences which even now, are breaking up and vanishing. 7This wisdom of God is spoken by me in a mystery. Unknown to the former generations of the world, it was to be our glory, our light, and God's fore-ordination of it preceded all other things. 8Unknown too to all powers of the mortal state, for they crucified its Lord. Had they known this hidden delectable wisdom, would they have crucified him? 9They knew it not, “for eye,” says the scripture, “hath not seen it, ear hath not heard it, the heart of mankind has not received the things that God makes ready for those that love Him.” (Isa. lxiv 4.)
Deep things can only be apprehended spiritually
10So it was through the Spirit, through revelation that we learned them. The very depths of God are searched by the Spirit, which also sheds light on all things; and the Spirit alone can know and reveal them, nought else; 11no more than one can tell any man's thoughts that he thinks in himself [none can tell them save the thinker himself], so none knoweth God's thoughts, but God Himself, the Spirit. 12And in our hearts and minds there now doth work not that spirit, which is the influence and animal intelligence of the world, but the divine Spirit, and this it is which reveals to us those things that are bestowed on man by God. 13It is that legacy which passes from God to man, those messages and bestowals which man receives from God which I teach you of, and how can I make it known by an utterance invented in the schools of learning, how can I teach it except as the Spirit teaches it, representing spiritual things in a spiritual method, to be spiritually discerned? Only thus can it be taught, for the materially minded man, who thinks through the senses, is totally and utterly ignorant of God's spiritual messages. They are to him absolute foolishness, and he cannot reach them, for they are only made known to the spiritual character. 14Now the true spiritual man has all experience at his feet to dispose of, to reject or accept according to the dictates of the Spirit, he himself being beyond the reach of the things wherein this judgment operates. 15For it is as spiritual beings, and not carnal, that we possess the mind of Christ. None teacheth us or judgeth us. 16“Who has known the mind of the Lord or being His counsellor hath taught Him?”
2
Telling about Christ and the cross
1Friends, when I came and told you the mystery#2.1 mystery: Some manuscripts have “testimony”. that God had shared with us, I didn't use big words or try to sound wise. 2In fact, while I was with you, I made up my mind to speak only about Jesus Christ, who had been nailed to a cross.
3At first, I was weak and trembling with fear.#Ac 18.9. 4When I talked with you or preached, I didn't try to prove anything by sounding wise. I simply let God's Spirit show his power. 5That way you would have faith because of God's power and not because of human wisdom.
6We do use wisdom when speaking to people who are mature in their faith. But it isn't the wisdom of this world or of its rulers, who will soon disappear. 7We speak of God's hidden and mysterious wisdom that God decided to use for our glory long before the world began. 8The rulers of this world didn't know anything about this wisdom. If they had known about it, they would not have nailed the glorious Lord to a cross. 9But it is just as the Scriptures say,#Is 64.4.
“What God has planned
for people who love him
is more than eyes have seen
or ears have heard.
It has never even
entered our minds!”
10God's Spirit has shown you everything. His Spirit finds out everything, even what is deep in the mind of God. 11You are the only one who knows what is in your own mind, and God's Spirit is the only one who knows what is in God's mind. 12But God has given us his Spirit. That's why we don't think the same way that the people of this world think. That's also why we can recognize the blessings that God has given us.
13Every word we speak was taught to us by God's Spirit, not by human wisdom. And this same Spirit helps us teach spiritual things to spiritual people.#2.13 teach spiritual things to spiritual people: Or “compare spiritual things with spiritual things.” 14That's why only someone who has God's Spirit can understand spiritual blessings. Anyone who doesn't have God's Spirit thinks these blessings are foolish. 15People who are guided by the Spirit can make all kinds of judgments, but they cannot be judged by others. 16The Scriptures ask,#Is 40.13 (LXX).
“Has anyone ever known
the thoughts of the Lord
or given him advice?”
But we understand what Christ is thinking.#2.16 we understand what Christ is thinking: Or “we think as Christ does.”