Friday, July 27, 2012

1 Corinthians 1 & 2


Paul is called to a church in Corinth

This book is about Paul too? Ok


Give thanks to God, your speech and knowledge will be enriched.

I think this is just more introduction

Divisions in the Church

Paul says that he has gotten reports that the people of this church are divided, different people say they follow different leaders. Paul then says that he is disappointed in them and he is glad he has only baptized a few of them so no one can blame him.

Seems a bit harsh.

Christ the Wisdom and Power of God

God will destroy the wisdom and power of people. God's wisdom and strength is greater than mans. Jews demand signs and Greeks demand wisdom, but we preach the crucifixion instead. Look around in the crowd, many of you are not wise or strong, but God has chosen you to shame the strong and wise who have not been chosen.

This section was hard to summarize because it is hard to follow. It appears to me that it is some kind of a pep talk. It doesn't really flow together very well. I do find it interesting that he is telling his crowd that they are chosen but simultaneously insulting them. I guess you have to work with what you have.

Proclaiming Christ Crucified (ch 2)

I did not come to you with wisdom, but with just the story of the crucifixion of Jesus. I was with you in fear and weakness and I came to you with a demonstration of power so that your faith will be based in the power of God rather than the wisdom of men.

I think he just called them stupid again.

Wisdom from the Spirit

We do impart wisdom to the mature, although it is hidden wisdom from God, not from the rulers of this age. The rulers of this age do not understand this or they would have not crucified Jesus.

There is certainly logic to that, although it really only applies to those in charge of the place he was crucified, you can't really put that on anyone else.

No one understands the thoughts of God except God himself, but if we listen to our spirit, we can understand the lessons God is trying to teach us.

This is a little confusing to me, it seems to be saying that it is impossible to understand God, but then it is also saying that if we listen to ourselves we can understand God. I guess it is a little more subtle than that. We can't understand God completely, but we can understand things he is trying to tell us or something. Perhaps this is the origin of fighting contradictions by saying things like "you can't understand God".

"Natural people" cannot understand God because he is spiritual.

This seems like a way to separate them from the people who don't believe like they do. If someone disagrees with you, it's not that they came to a rational decision different from yours, it is that they are not "spiritual people" and they simply don't understand. Seems like an effective way to keep from losing converts, make them feel special and put a barrier between them and anyone who might challenge their beliefs. 

v15: "The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one"

Wow, this is pretty clear, we can judge you, you can't judge us. I'm not even sure what to say, it is ludicrous. 


  1. I apologize if my notes are out of order with yours, as my hard copy of the Bible isn't really divided into sections.

    I think the divisions in the church is something that still stands. According to wikipedia, there are over 38,000 Christian denominations. The estimate varies from different places, but I thought that would be a source to use.

    "You can't understand God." This always frustrates me when someone throws that out in a discussion. Most of the time I've heard it, it's been when someone feels cornered on glaring contradictions in the Bible. Also, when we are supposed to turn internally to talk to God, how do we tell when it's just our heads messing with us and when it is really God? For some reason, I think of David Berkowitz aka the "Summer of Sam Killer." He thought that his dog was telling him to do it. The human mind is a complicated and fragile thing that is prone error.

    Why is God the destroyer of wisdom? What's wrong with learning about the world around us? It's helped us cure disease, make life more comfortable, as well as safe. Other parts of the Bible seem to point to wisdom being a good thing. Maybe the later verses mean wisdom as in "agreeing with what we agree with." It sounds like we have similar interpretations.

    1. I forgot to add that I totally agree with you on Verse 15. It's almost antithetical to the verses where the Bible says Judge not. Maybe since there is a contradiction, I am "taking those verses out of context." Any clarification on this would be awesome.

    2. "my hard copy of the Bible isn't really divided into sections."

      Really? I just assumed they were all like mine, is it a version thing? I suppose I could start putting verse numbers next to the sections.

      Reading about the son of sam killer is pretty frightening I must say. He was clearly an insane person, so who knows if he would have killed a bunch of people in other environments, but having the idea that God talks to you being mainstream I'm sure doesn't help things.

    3. I could always just not be lazy and follow along the ESV version via They have it broken down into the same sections. =P

    4. While that is true, reading on a computer screen is not a nice as reading on a kindle or a real book. I had just assumed all bibles had the same section headings, I didn't realize it was a version thing. It's no extra work for me to add verse numbers after the section headings, so I will start doing that.

      These little 'basic facts' about the bible that I have learned doing this blog do amuse me, the other one was that Jesus was only alive in 4 books. I had always just assumed he was in the entire new testament, or at least most of it.


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