1 Corinthians 1:17-25 (New International Version)
17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel–not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
Christ the Wisdom and Power of God
18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.” 20 Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21 For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe. 22 Jews demand miraculous signs and Greeks look for wisdom, 23 but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, 24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.
A case before the US Supreme Court focused on whether a religious symbol, specifically a cross, should be allowed on public land. Mark Sherman, writing for Associated Press, said that although the cross in question was erected in 1934 as a memorial to soldiers who died in World War 1, one veteran’s group that opposed it called the cross “a powerful Christian symbol” and “not a symbol of any other religion.”
The cross has always been controversial. In the first century, the apostle Paul said that Christ had sent him “to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God”. As followers of Christ, we see the cross as more than a powerful Christian symbol. It is the evidence of God’s power to free us from the tyranny of our sin.
In a diverse and pluralistic society, the controversy over religious symbols will continue. Whether a cross can be displayed on public property will likely be determined by the courts. But displaying the power of the cross through our lives will be decided in our hearts.
Christ takes each sin, each pain, each loss,
And by the power of His cross
Transforms our brokenness and shame
So that our lives exalt His name.
Nothing speaks more clearly of God’s love than the cross…..
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