I finally made some much-deserved time to study a Bible verse that caught my eye this morning as I flipped open the sermon pamphlet my dad had given me from last Sunday-
"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." - 1 Corinthians 1:18
I read Matthew Henry's commentary of it, and he as usual made good points:
"Christ crucified is a stumbling-block to the Jews. They could not get
over it. They had a conceit that their expected Messiah was to be a
great temporal prince, and therefore would never own one who made so
mean an appearance in life, and died so accursed a death, for their
deliverer and king. They despised him, and looked upon him as execrable,
because he was hanged on a tree, and because he did not gratify them
with a sign to their mind, though his divine power shone out in
"[The Greeks] laughed at the story of a crucified Saviour, and despised the
apostles’ way of telling it. They sought for wisdom. They were men of
wit and reading, men that had cultivated arts and sciences, and had, for
some ages, been in a manner the very mint of knowledge and learning.
There was nothing in the plain doctrine of the cross to suit their
taste, nor humour their vanity, nor gratify a curious and wrangling
temper: they entertained it therefore with scorn and contempt. What,
hope to be saved by one that could not save himself."
Does this sound familiar to you? Much like our modern society, does it not?
The Jews to me are reminiscent of the watered-down Christians (or "Water Christians" as I call them) who have submitted to the world instead of God. The Jews back then wouldn't accept a Savior of such humble birth, who hung out with rabble, despite His many miracles that proved He was indeed the Son of God. They just wanted a magic prince cloaked in splendor.
The Greeks remind me of both atheists and some other Water Christians. Not always the same kind as above who are too vain to truly accept the Gospel, but ones who are too arrogant to, which is definitely the problem with most atheists today as well. The Greeks scorned the Savior who (supposedly) couldn't even save Himself. Why, they were so advanced in the arts, sciences, and knowledge in general. Clearly they knew better than some guy who lived simply, told his friends to give away their worldly possessions, and preached revolutionary yet simple sermons. Nothing about this plain gospel appealed to them, exactly how the anti-Jesus atheists and so-called Christians of today are, the former of whom pats themselves on the back for their religious-like faith the vague, monolithic Science deity; the latter of whom sneers at true believing Christians trying to follow the Word even when it clashes with society's opinions to do so. These worldly 'Christians' might actually have a faint belief in God or go to church to hear a nice sugar-coated sermon that doesn't challenge them to live a different life than the comfortable one they're used to, but they have no interest in serving Jesus and tackling obstacles the world throws at anyone who will do so.
These people think themselves too wise to believe in or follow God wholeheartedly. They're too good for that. They know better.
Keith Krell also made a point I'd like to quote:
"The Word of the cross is that salvation is freely granted by God's grace, not human merit or intellect. Furthermore, salvation is extended to all people. This levels the ground at the foot of the cross. Everyone comes to God
through faith, based upon the work of Jesus Christ. This offends man’s
Unbelievers and false Christians who shun the Gospel do not want to be equal with people they dislike (especially followers of Jesus, but this can apply to anyone). They're better than them. Those losers are lesser than they are. It also means they're no excuse to not accept God if it's free- and they don't want to. They want to worship themselves, the world, money, anything that appeals to their pride but God.
So it all just comes down to human pride getting offended. And as such, these groups will be left to perish in their own stubborn pride.