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1From: Sha’ul, called by God’s will to be an emissary of the Messiah Yeshua; and from brother Sosthenes
2To: God’s Messianic community in Corinth, consisting of those who have been set apart by Yeshua the Messiah and called to be God’s holy people — along with everyone everywhere who calls on the name of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, their Lord as well as ours:
3Grace to you and shalom from God our Father and the Lord Yeshua the Messiah.
4I thank my God always for you because of God’s love and kindness given to you through the Messiah Yeshua, 5in that you have been enriched by him in so many ways, particularly in power of speech and depth of knowledge. 6Indeed, the testimony about the Messiah has become firmly established in you; 7so that you are not lacking any spiritual gift and are eagerly awaiting the revealing of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah. 8He will enable you to hold out until the end and thus be blameless on the Day of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah — 9God is trustworthy: it was he who called you into fellowship with his Son, Yeshua the Messiah, our Lord.
10Nevertheless, brothers, I call on you in the name of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah to agree, all of you, in what you say, and not to let yourselves remain split into factions but be restored to having a common mind and a common purpose. 11For some of Chloe’s people have made it known to me, my brothers, that there are quarrels among you. 12I say this because one of you says, “I follow Sha’ul”; another says, “I follow Apollos”; another, “I follow Kefa”; while still another says, “I follow the Messiah!” 13Has the Messiah been split in pieces? Was it Sha’ul who was put to death on a stake for you? Were you immersed into the name of Sha’ul? 14I thank God that I didn’t immerse any of you except Crispus and Gaius — 15otherwise someone might say that you were indeed immersed into my name. 16(Oh yes, I did also immerse Stephanas and his household; beyond that, I can’t remember whether I immersed anyone else.)
17For the Messiah did not send me to immerse but to proclaim the Good News — and to do it without relying on “wisdom” that consists of mere rhetoric, so as not to rob the Messiah’s execution-stake of its power. 18For the message about the execution-stake is nonsense to those in the process of being destroyed, but to us in the process of being saved it is the power of God. 19Indeed, the Tanakh says,
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise
and frustrate the intelligence of the intelligent.”
20Where does that leave the philosopher, the Torah-teacher, or any of today’s thinkers? Hasn’t God made this world’s wisdom look pretty foolish? 21For God’s wisdom ordained that the world, using its own wisdom, would not come to know him. Therefore God decided to use the “nonsense” of what we proclaim as his means of saving those who come to trust in it. 22Precisely because Jews ask for signs and Greeks try to find wisdom, 23we go on proclaiming a Messiah executed on a stake as a criminal! To Jews this is an obstacle, and to Greeks it is nonsense; 24but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, this same Messiah is God’s power and God’s wisdom! 25For God’s “nonsense” is wiser than humanity’s “wisdom.”
And God’s “weakness” is stronger than humanity’s “strength.” 26Just look at yourselves, brothers — look at those whom God has called! Not many of you are wise by the world’s standards, not many wield power or boast noble birth. 27But God chose what the world considers nonsense in order to shame the wise; God chose what the world considers weak in order to shame the strong; 28and God chose what the world looks down on as common or regards as nothing in order to bring to nothing what the world considers important; 29so that no one should boast before God. 30It is his doing that you are united with the Messiah Yeshua. He has become wisdom for us from God, and righteousness and holiness and redemption as well! 31Therefore — as the Tanakh says — “Let anyone who wants to boast, boast about Adonai.”
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1 # Rom 1.1; Acts 18.17. Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and our brother Sosthenes,
2 # Acts 18.1. To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints together with all those who in every place call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, both their Lord and ours:
3 # Rom 1.7. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
4 # Rom 1.8. I give thanks to God#1.4 Other ancient authorities read my God always for you because of the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus, 5that in every way you were enriched in him with all speech and all knowledge— 6even as the testimony to Christ was confirmed among you— 7so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift, as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ; 8#1 Cor 5.5; 2 Cor 1.14. who will sustain you to the end, guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9#Rom 8.28; 1 Jn 1.3. God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
10I appeal to you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree and that there be no dissensions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. 11For it has been reported to me by Chloe's people that there is quarreling among you, my brethren. 12#1 Cor 3.4; Acts 18.24; 1 Cor 3.22; Jn 1.42; 1 Cor 9.5; 15.5. What I mean is that each one of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” 13#Mt 28.19; Acts 2.38. Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14#Acts 18.8; Rom 16.23. I am thankful#1.14 Other ancient authorities read I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius; 15lest any one should say that you were baptized in my name. 16#1 Cor 16.15. (I did baptize also the household of Stephanas. Beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized any one else.) 17#Jn 4.2; Acts 10.48; 1 Cor 2.1,4,13. For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
18For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19#Is 29.14. For it is written,
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
and the cleverness of the clever I will thwart.”
20Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. 22#Mt 12.38. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, 23#1 Cor 2.2; Gal 3.1; 5.11. but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, 24but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
26For consider your call, brethren; not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth; 27#Jas 2.5. but God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise, God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong, 28#Rom 4.17. God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, 29#Eph 2.9. so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. 30#1 Cor 4.15; Rom 8.1; 2 Cor 5.21; 1 Cor 6.11; 1 Thess 5.23; Eph 1.7,14; Col 1.14; Rom 3.24. He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom, our righteousness and sanctification and redemption; 31#Jer 9.24; 2 Cor 10.17. therefore, as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast of the Lord.”