1 Letter to the Corinthians
1 From Paul, called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and from Sosthenes, our brother, 2 to God’s Church which is in Corinth; to you whom God has sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy, together with those who everywhere call upon the name of our Lord Christ Jesus, their Lord and ours.
3 Receive grace and peace from God our Father, and Christ Jesus our Lord.
4 I give thanks constantly to my God for you and for the grace of God given to you in Christ Jesus. 5 For you have been fully enriched in him with words as well as with knowledge, 6 even as the testimony concerning Christ was confirmed in you. 7 You do not lack any spiritual gift and only await the glorious coming of Christ Jesus, our Lord. 8 He will keep you stead fast to the end, and you will be with out reproach on the day of the coming of our Lord Jesus. 9 The faithful God will not fail you after calling you to this fellowship with his Son, Christ Jesus, our Lord.
Divisions among the faithful
10 I beg of you, brothers, in the name of Christ Jesus, our Lord, to agree among yourselves and do away with divisions; please be per fectly united, with one mind and one judgment.
11 For I heard from people of Cloe’s house about your rivalries. 12 What I mean is this: some say, “I am for Paul,” and others: “I am for Apollo,” or “I am for Peter,” or “I am for Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided or have I, Paul, been crucified for you? Have you been baptized in the name of Paul?
14 I thank God that I did not baptize any of you, except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one can say that he was baptized in my name. 16 Well, I have also baptized the Ste pha nas family. Apart from these, I do not recall having baptized anyone else.
The folly of the cross
17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to proclaim his Gospel. And not with beautiful words! That would be like getting rid of the cross of Christ. 18 The language of the cross remains nonsense for those who are lost. Yet for us who are saved, it is the power of God, 19 as Scripture says: I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and make fail the foresight of the foresighted. 20 Mas ters of human wisdom, educated people, philosophers, you have no reply! And the wisdom of this world? God let it fail.
21 At first God spoke the language of wisdom, and the world did not know God through wisdom. Then God thought of saving the believers through the foolishness that we preach.
22 The Jews ask for miracles and the Greeks for a higher knowledge, 23 while we proclaim a crucified Mes siah. For the Jews, what a great scandal! And for the Greeks, what nonsense! 24 But he is Christ, the power of God and the wisdom of God for those called by God among both Jews and Greeks.
25 In reality, the “foolishness” of God is wiser than humans, and the “weakness” of God is stronger than humans.
26 Brothers and sisters, look and see whom God has called. Few among you can be said to be cultured or wealthy, and few belong to noble families. 27 Yet God has chosen what the world considers foolish, to shame the wise; he has chosen what the world considers weak to shame the strong. 28 God has chosen common and un important people, making use of what is nothing to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no mortal may boast before God. 30 But, by God’s grace you are in Christ Jesus, who has become our wisdom from God, and who makes us just and holy and free. 31 Scripture says: Let the one who boasts boast of the Lord.