1 PAUL, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, with brother Sosthenes,
2 to the church of God at Corinth, to those who are consecrated in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, as well as to all who, wherever they may be, invoke the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord no less than ours:
3 grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
4 I always thank my God for the grace of God that has been bestowed on you in Christ Jesus; 5 in him you have received a wealth of all blessing, full power to speak of your faith and full insight into its meaning, 6 all of which verifies the testimony we bore to Christ when we were with you. 7 Thus you lack no spiritual endowment during these days of waiting till our Lord Jesus Christ is revealed; 8 and to the very end he will guarantee that you are vindicated on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 Faithful is the God who called you to this fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
10 Brothers, for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ I beg of you all to drop these party-cries. There must be no cliques among you; you must regain your common temper and attitude. 11 For Chloe's people inform me that you are quarrelling. 12 By 'quarrelling' I mean that each of you has his party-cry, "I belong to Paul," "And I to Apollos," "And I to Cephas," "And I to Christ." 13 Has Christ been parcelled out? Was it Paul who was crucified for you? Was it in Paul's name that you were baptized? 14 I am thankful now that I baptized none of you, except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one can say you were baptized in my name. 16 (Well, I did baptize the household of Stephanas, but no one else, as far as I remember.) 17 Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel. And to preach it with no fine rhetoric, lest the cross of Christ should lose its power!
18 Those who are doomed to perish find the story of the cross 'sheer folly,' but it means the power of God for those whom he saves. 19 It is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the sages, I will confound the insight of the wise.
20 Sage, scribe, critic of this world, where are they all? Has not God stultified the wisdom of the world? 21 For when the world with all its wisdom failed to know God in his wisdom, God resolved to save believers by the 'sheer folly' of the Christian message. 22 Jews demand miracles and Greeks want wisdom, 23 but our message is Christ the crucified ??a stumbling-block to the Jews, 'sheer folly' to the Gentiles, 24 but for those who are called, whether Jews or Greeks, a Christ who is the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the 'foolishness' of God is wiser than men, and the 'weakness' of God is stronger than men.
26 Why, look at your own ranks, my brothers; not many wise men (that is, judged by human standards), not many leading men, not many of good birth, have been called! 27 No, God has chosen what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God has chosen what is weak in the world to shame what is strong; 28 God has chosen what is mean and despised in the world ??things which are not, to put down things that are; 29 that no person may boast in the sight of God. 30 This is the God to whom you owe your being in Christ Jesus, whom God has made our 'Wisdom,' that is, our righteousness and consecration and redemption; 31 so that, as it is written, let him who boasts boast of the Lord.