We saw yesterday that there was only one solution for a troubled church; “Jesus Christ and Him crucified” (1 Corinthians 2:1-2). Paul maintains the centrality of Christ throughout his ministry. His first letter was addressed to believers who wanted to combine faith and the works of man for salvation. This doctrine resulted in a ‘gospel according to man’ (Galatians 1:11) which always invites boasting in our own works. Paul declares, “Far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ by which the world has been crucified to me and I to the world” (6:14).
This principle is affirmed in Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” The more we understand what the grace of God has done for us, the more we will realize that boasting in ANY FORM has no place in the mind and heart of a Christian. Our nature, world and culture have always taught us the evils of pride. Crucifixion puts an end to boasting. We must see ourselves as crucified with Christ (Galatians 2:20), otherwise the tendencies to pride and boasting will persist.
What freedom we have when our only boast is in Jesus Christ! Since we are complete in Him (Colossians 2:10), there is no need to boast in anything or anyone else. These truths bring the greatest joy and satisfaction, and effectiveness in ministry. Paul’s life always pointed to Christ as his life; “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21).
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