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The Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ

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Reaction to the message of the cross

Historical reality of the cross
Jesus Christ died on a literal cross just outside the city of Jerusalem
Acts 2:22–24 NKJV
“Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know—Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.
Acts 2:
Acts 2:36 NKJV
“Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
Hebrews 13:12 NKJV
Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.
Hebrews 13:
Some believe it’s message is foolishness
They find its message insipid - For the message (the word) of the cross is foolishness
They believe it is total nonsense and of no value to worship a Jewish man executed on a Roman cross.
They find following and worshipping someone who was executed on the cross to be nonsense and a waste of time and life.
Foolishness = insipid (useless and no value)
Jeremiah 14:10 NKJV
Thus says the Lord to this people: “Thus they have loved to wander; They have not restrained their feet. Therefore the Lord does not accept them; He will remember their iniquity now, And punish their sins.”
Jeremiah 10:14 NKJV
Everyone is dull-hearted, without knowledge; Every metalsmith is put to shame by an image; For his molded image is falsehood, And there is no breath in them.
Jeremiah 14:10
Jeremiah 51:17 NKJV
Everyone is dull-hearted, without knowledge; Every metalsmith is put to shame by the carved image; For his molded image is falsehood, And there is no breath in them.
Isaiah 19:11 NKJV
Surely the princes of Zoan are fools; Pharaoh’s wise counselors give foolish counsel. How do you say to Pharaoh, “I am the son of the wise, The son of ancient kings?”
Isaiah 44:25 NKJV
Who frustrates the signs of the babblers, And drives diviners mad; Who turns wise men backward, And makes their knowledge foolishness;
Isaiah 44:
Romans 1:21 NKJV
because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.
Romans 1:21–22 NKJV
because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools,
Theological Lexicon of the New Testament μωραίνω, μωρία, μωρολογία, μωρός

Is there anything more absurd for a reasonable person to hear than a preacher’s declaration that a Jew who was poor, condemned to death by the highest political and religious authorities of his nation, was crucified like a slave? He is risen! This is the Son of God, and he has saved the world! The proclamation of this ignominy is not folly—it is nonsense.

They believe it’s stupid and absurd that an emblem of death can help or change the condition of the world. They seek to either discredit the message or to destroy it all together
In the foolishness of their unbelief they fail to see their own condition - to those who are perishing
They try to ignore it
They try to discredit it
Some believe it’s message is the power of God
God’s reaction to unbelief

The elite and the cross

The world’s source of wisdom
God makes the world’s wisdom look foolish
“For since, in the wisdom of God,”
The world’s wisdom will not discover God -
“the world through wisdom did not know God”
It pleases God to save believers through the message preached that the world considers foolish
“it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.”
The search
Some are looking for proof
“For the Jews request a sign,”
Some are seeking wisdom
“and Greeks seek after wisdom”
The Gospel and their search
To all the same message is preached
“but we preach Christ crucified,”
To some (religious) it’s a stumbling block
“to the Jews a stumbling block”
To some (the wisdom seekers)
“and to the Greeks foolishness”
To all who believe
Those who respond to God’s call of salvation
“but to those who are called”
From both groups
“both Jews and Greeks,”
Have come to realize the power of the Gospel makes sense
“Christ the power of God and wisdom of God”
God’s wisdom and strength compared to mens’
If God had foolishness it is greater than all of man’s wisdom
“Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men,
If God had weakness it is greater than all of man’s strength
“and the weakness of God is stronger than men.”

The sovereignty and wisdom of God

Look at who God calls
Our own testimony
“For you see your calling,”
Our history
“that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called.”
Look who God chooses
Those the world considers foolish to put to shame their wisdom
“But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise,”
Theological Lexicon of the New Testament μωραίνω, μωρία, μωρολογία, μωρός

That means that people must believe, must give themselves over to God in adherence to mysteries that derail human logic and human good sense: “Let no one be deceived! If anyone believes that he is wise among you in this world, let him become stupid (mōros) in order to become wise, for this world’s wisdom is stupidity (mōria) with God.”

Those the world considers weak to shame those who think their strong
“and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty;”
Look who God chooses continued
He chose the base things, despised things, and non-existent things to bring to nothing the things that are
“and the base things of the world and the the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are,”
The reason God chose those He did
“that no flesh should glory in His presence.”
The relationship of the believer to God
A relationship based upon Jesus Christ
“But of Him you are in Christ Jesus,”
A relationship that revealed all we really need is found in Jesus Christ
“who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption—
We glory in Him
“that, as it is written, “He who glories, let him glory in the LORD.”
By making the gospel less offensive we make the power weaker to transform a life
Jeremiah 10:14 NKJV
Everyone is dull-hearted, without knowledge; Every metalsmith is put to shame by an image; For his molded image is falsehood, And there is no breath in them.
Jeremiah 51:17 NKJV
Everyone is dull-hearted, without knowledge; Every metalsmith is put to shame by the carved image; For his molded image is falsehood, And there is no breath in them.
Jeremiah 51:
Isaiah 19:10
Isaiah 19:11 NKJV
Surely the princes of Zoan are fools; Pharaoh’s wise counselors give foolish counsel. How do you say to Pharaoh, “I am the son of the wise, The son of ancient kings?”
Isaiah 44:25 NKJV
Who frustrates the signs of the babblers, And drives diviners mad; Who turns wise men backward, And makes their knowledge foolishness;
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