“Do not deceive yourselves. If any one of you thinks he is wise by the standards of this age, he should become a “fool” so that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight. As it is written: “He catches the wise in their craftiness,” and again, “The Lord knows that the thoughts of the wise are futile.” (Reference: 1 Corinthians 3:18-20 )
Wisdom, foolishness – by now, beloved, you may wondering which is the better course. But, you may also be aware enough theologically to understand what the different verses of the past few days are saying. There is knowledge and intelligence that the world judges as being “wise”, and there is knowledge and intelligence that God judges as being “wise.” There is foolishness also that may be ignorance or naivete. And while it is not a deep theological question, you might ask yourself which wisdom/foolishness to you possess, and value.
Believers of all faith traditions and generations seek to be wise in their faith systems. And that wisdom takes all sorts of shapes and forms. Some wisdom is truly good and serves us well in serving God. And other wisdom, like the writer of 1 Corinthians says, traps us and catches us unawares and outside of God guidance and direction. So again I ask you beloved . . . what wisdom to you value and use? And what foolishness do you allow yourself?
Historic Anabaptist Paul Glock wrote in a letter to his brethren, while being imprisoned for fifteen years, stating that he was leaving his fate to God. He said he trusted God to keep him safe from the “false and erring designs” of his captors. This is a reminder to me, beloved, that when we live in the world we are subject to the world’s judgment and wishes. Do not let yourself be swayed by the advice and wisdom of the world. Being a fool in the world’s eyes might just be wisdom in God’s eyes.
As Glock also wrote in his letter, “May the Lord Christ give us his grace and strength. So that we persevere in the good to the end of our lives. No matter what the cost, death or imprisonment, to the praise of God and to the comfort of the pious. Amen.” Selah!