Friday was April fools day. My post that day was “15 Ways Not To Be A Fool.” However, there is a sense in which the Bible says we ought to be a fool.
The apostle Paul expressed it in these words:
“We are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are honored, we are dishonored!” –1 Cor. 4:10
This verse is DWS, in social media parlance. IOW, “dripping with sarcasm.”
According to the wisdom of the world, and the erudition of the Greek philosophers, Paul was a fool. When he preached in Athens, many ridiculed and sneered at his teaching concerning the resurrection (Ax. 17:32).
Apparently, some Corinthian Christians had combined human philosophy with Christianity and thought they were smarter than Paul. Ironically, Paul was educated by the widely respected Pharisee Gamaliel, a doctor of the law. If he had continued that pursuit, many scholars believe he would have risen to great heights as a leader on the Sanhedrin, the Jewish Supreme Court.
Instead, Paul renounced his worldly credentials and gave up the possibility of prestige and position, to preach Christ crucified, which offended both Jews and Gentiles. The Greeks thought it was foolishness. To the Jews, Christ was a stumbling block. Both thought Paul was a fool.
But Paul chose to be a fool for Christ. To live for Christ. To serve Christ. To preach Christ. To suffer for Christ. To be defamed for Christ. And, if necessary, to die for Christ.
It’s a great lesson for us today. The world doesn’t understand it when we give up pleasure, power, prestige, and position because of our Faith. To the unbeliever, it seems absurd. Unreasonable. Foolish.
However, like Paul, we “know in whom we have believed.” We’ve experienced the blessings in Christ. Witnessed the cleansing power of His blood. Felt the peace of forgiveness. Enjoyed the brotherhood of believers. And faced life’s obstacles with the hope of better tomorrow in eternity.
In the words of the martyred missionary Jim Elliot, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman