Sunday Ponderings: Remembering the Gospel

Welcome to the first edition of "Sunday Ponderings" here at Onward and Upward! The purpose of this is to remember and reflect on various aspects of Sunday worship--anything from the hymns to the sermon. I tend to easily forget what I learn during the service, so this is a wonderful way for me to remember by writing it down to collect my thoughts. To participate, blog your own "Sunday Ponderings" post and add it to the Mr. Linky below. Sometime later this week I'll provide the information for the button to put on your own blog, if you want to. Thanks so much to Ashley for the work on this!

This week's sermon was preached by our associate pastor on 1 Corinthians 1:10-17, 2:1-5:

10 I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. 11 For it has been reported to me by Chloe's people that there is quarreling among you, my brothers. 12 What I mean is that each one of you says, “I follow Paul,” or “I follow Apollos,” or “I follow Cephas,” or “I follow Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14 I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one may say that you were baptized in my name. 16 (I did baptize also the household of Stephanas. Beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.

2:1 And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. 2 For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 3 And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, 4 and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.
He reminded us to be singularly focused on the gospel. It is very easy in our study or witnessing to focus on our favorite preachers and writers instead. Like in the passage when people claimed to follow Apollos or Paul, we may find ourselves listening to the gospel according to others. (Not that it's a bad thing to study more mature Christian's works, but we must be careful to not elevate it too highly.) We must be careful not to attach other things to the gospel message as well. We preach Christ crucified, not Christ crucified and keep all your ducks in a row to get to heaven. We must also not let ourselves get in the way as we share the gospel, as Paul says not to preach with "words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power." We should not focus so much on what to say or how to say it to give us the best light. We should not be ashamed of our stuttering selves when we share the Good News.

Do you have a Sunday Pondering? Feel free to share!

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1 Comment:

  1. Joanna said...
    "We preach Christ crucified, not Christ crucified and keep all your ducks in a row to get to heaven."

    I appreciate that point. I come across people who have the perception that Christianity = Rules, not Christianity = Following Christ. We've given the World the wrong impression.

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