This short meditation was delivered during Providence Community Church’s Good Friday service. We came to God in Prayer with singing and reading of His word. It was lovely:
1 Cor 1:18-25
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,
And bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.”
20 Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? 21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. 22 For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; 23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, 24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
Wisdom is a lovely thing. Proverbs says that the LORD gives wisdom… And happy is the man who finds wisdom. But Paul looks at the cross and he does not see what most would say is wisdom, rather he sees foolishness. A foolish message that is, none the less, full of power; the very power of God for salvation.
Paul asks, “Where are the wise?” They are gathered before Pontius Pilate crying out, “Crucify Him, Crucify Him.” The are with King Herod pouring contempt on this foolish Savior who would stir up crowds He could not and would not control. The wise would dress Him up in a purple robe to put his foolishness on display. He is going to go up against the might of Rome? Is there anything more foolish?
Where are the Scribes? They are at the foot of the cross crying, with the Chief Priest and the thieves, “He saved others; let Him save Himself if He is the Christ.” “Give us a sign” the Jews cry out, “come down off your cross!” And yet He scandalously, foolishly remained nailed to the tree. Now, the Message of His crucifixion is preached that you might be saved. How foolish is that?
Ah, but that foolish Savior is wiser than all the men gathered in the Praetorium. He is wiser than Herod and his mocking court. He is wiser than the high priest and scribes He is wiser than you and me. The foolishness of God is wiser than men. He did not save Himself, but He did save you Christian. Knowing nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified destroys the wisdom of the wise and brings to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
In the midst of that Salvation, in light of such foolishness, God gives you a sign and a seal to encourage you in your faith. While the Cross looks foolish; this table looks weak. Bread and wine mixed with faith? The disputer of this age mocks such weakness and a weak God, delivering such a sign.
Have you not seen what I have done? Where are my labors, he asks? Where are my good works? They are pushed aside by a God whose weakness is stronger than men and our puny attempts at righteousness.
We want to come in our strength. We want to come after we have cleaned ourselves up and made a righteous stand for God and godliness. We want to come on our best days. But God calls you today, this moment, to come to the marriage supper of the Lamb. Was today a mess? Did anger eat at you? Did your lust carry you away? Were there lies on your lips and in your heart? This weak table is stronger than any man, woman or child. Jesus Christ offers Himself to You in this meal. Lay a hold of Him by faith and He will grip You tightly with Grace sufficient for all your sins. Come, all You baptized, Believing sinners. Come to the weak God, Strong to save. Come to a foolish God, wiser than the world, wise enough to lay all our iniquity on Jesus his only begotten Son. Come to the table with eyes that are full of faith. Come, taste and see that the Lord is good.