Monday, January 14, 2008

Sermon Notes | God's Wisdom: Cross-Centered, Spirit-Revealed (I Cor. 2:6-16)

Yesterday at my church -- Solid Rock Church of Riverdale, Md. -- we were honored to have C.J. Mahaney of Sovereign Grace Ministries as our guest. Mahaney's sermon was the first in a four-part series on applying the truth of the Gospel to the life of the church, both corporately and individually, and he shared from I Corinthians 2:6-16, a passage on how the wisdom of God's plan of salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone is unimaginable to the unbeliever but divinely revealed by the Holy Spirit to the hearts of those God is calling unto salvation.

It was an awesome sermon, but is not available online, otherwise I'd direct you to it. I will, however, share some of the sermon notes. I can't make any guarantee that I will do this without fail, but I hope to make the posting of sermon notes a Monday morning staple. By the grace of God I will endeavor to do so. That said, here are the key points from my notes. I pray the Lord blesses you through the reading of them and more importantly, the Scripture referred to in them.

1.) The epistle of I Corinthians is a "divinely inspired warning for a foolish church." Paul's epistle addressed many shortcomings and pitfalls of the church at Corinth, among them [and perhaps informing all of them] is the habit the church had of striving to win the approval of the philosophers of the wisdom of this world. [My thought: This is a classic problem in churches throughout history, including the church in America today. Mahaney at one point quipped that if the Corinthian church could be so foolish under the Apostle Paul's watch, his Spirit-inspired corrective advice to the church is certainly worth heeding today.]

2.) Mahaney notes that I Cor. 2:6-16 illustrates that God's wisdom is such that is "defined by the cross and must be revealed by the Spirit." [My thought: Essentially, Paul says that human wisdom was not how the Corinthian church received Christ. They believed at the preaching of Christ crucified, and Paul turns back to the cross as central not only to our salvation from God's wrath, but for Gospel-living itself. It's central to reforming our thinking from the folly of the world.]

3.) There are three major points to grasp about the nature of divine wisdom from the passage

a.) Divine wisdom is of divine origin (vv. 6-9). Corollary point: Human wisdom is hostile to the Gospel (I Cor. 1:17).

b.) Divine wisdom is revealed through the Holy Spirit and not arrived at by human reasoning (I Cor. 2:10-13)

c.) Divine wisdom imparts a divine perspective (vv.14-16)

4.) What's the application of this passage to our engagement with the culture and with those inside the church? Three points (n.b. that the portions following the dash are a mish-mash of Mahaney's explanation and my thoughts/meditations on the matter.

a.) Discernment -- applying this divine wisdom to all facets of our life

b.) Humility -- our salvation and our understanding of the Gospel is because God initiated our salvation, not because we're smarter or better people than those who don't trust in Christ

c.) Gratefulness to God -- God saved us not because we deserved it but because he chose to extend mercy to us. We should never get past that fact and so never lose our gratitude for
Christ's finished atoning work.



michele January 14, 2008 at 4:33 PM  

Hey! Thanks for the link. You are the first person that technorati has found that linked to us. Because of you, we now have an authority of 1 :-)

I'll return the favor as soon as the tech person gets around to it.

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