"Where's the power?" (wjl)
Song: “All Hail the pow'r of Jesus' name“
On what is ministry fueled?
The Corinthians had a problem, an infatuation with technique of ministry. The problem still goes on today. The Corinthians argued often concerning the importance of style: ethos, logos, rhetoric, elocution, memorization, pronunciation--all ways to deliver a speech effectively.
We are too infatuated with the how of ministry, not the cross of Christ. The cross is in danger of being made powerless by the use of our cutting edge techniques.
1:18-25: The word accomplished through the cross is counter-intuitive to the message people want to hear. The cross is a stumbling block and foolishness to those who want to succeed and who like to do things their own way. Human wisdom and power are in the way. Only a foolish message will dethrone men. What will you adorn your message with--power or the cross? Effective communication or the work of Christ?
1:26-31 The word accomplished through the cross is removes all grounds for boasting. It is the losers who are the called. There are no bragging rights when Jesus is preached.
2:1-5 The word accomplished through the cross keeps the right faith in place. When Paul came to the Corinthians, he set aside rhetoric, the very thing they prided themselves in and this offended the Corinthians. Instead of teaching, he went right to work. When Paul finally preached, it was on Christ only and him Crucified. He gave the Corinthians no chance to hear him based on style. He came in weakness and fear because he chose to demonstrate the Spirit in power, not power in preaching alone.
Stay focused on Cross-centered, prayerful ministry. Effectiveness depends on where power lies.
May the mind of Christ, my Savior,
live in me from day to day,
by His love and pow’r controlling
all I do and say.
May the Word of God dwell richly
in my heart from hour to hour,
so that all may see I triumph
only thru His pow’r.
May the peace of God, my Father,
rule my life in ev’rything
that I may be calm to comfort
sick and sorrowing.
May the love of Jesus fill me,
as the waters fill the sea;
Him exalting, self-abasing—
this is victory.
May I run the race before me
strong and brave to face the foe,
looking only unto Jesus
as I onward go.
May His beauty rest upon me
as I seek the lost to win,
and may they forget the channel,
seeing only Him.
(by: Kate B. Wilkinson, 1859–1928)
Thursday, January 12, 2006
chapelblog: 1 Cor. 1:10-2:5
"Where's the power?" (wjl)
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