Monday, July 25, 2011

The Message of the Cross: What it says about us (Part 2)

In the previous post we looked at one reason why the message of the cross is offensive to many people. In this post we look at another reason.

We will never be wise enough

The platonic philosophers had the concept of two realms: the material realm in which we live and a higher realm of truth; a realm in which god lives. The problem for the philosophers was understanding how man, living in the lower realm, could ascertain truth, which was in the higher realm. To answer this question, Plato came up with the concept of the "Logos". Logos is a Greek word for reason. Plato's idea was that by applying reason, man could ascend into the higher realm and take hold of true knowledge. It was though the Logos that mankind could find the truth and, in the end, find god.

Plato got a lot of things right. He believed in a single creator god, he understood the divide between god and man, and he realized the need for something to bridge that gap. However, he failed to identify the true nature of that bridge. Man in all his wisdom, reasoning, and contemplation will never be wise enough to bridge that gap and ascend into the higher realm to know truth and to know God.
"Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe." (1 Corinthians 1:20-21)
Worldly wisdom has a way of puffing us up, making us proud, and making it hard for us to receive the true wisdom of God. We think we can figure it out on our own. We despise the simple truths of the Gospel and treat the message of the cross with contempt; preferring our own intellect, reason, and beliefs to that which God has revealed. However, if we are to have any hope in obtaining truth and the knowledge of God, we must first humble ourselves and submit ourselves to God's wisdom.
"Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you thinks that he is wise in this age, he must become foolish, so that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness before God. For it is written, 'He is the one who catches the wise in their craftiness'; and again, 'The Lord knows the reasonings of the wise, that they are useless.'" (1 Corinthians 3:18-20)
More to come. David Robison

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