Fools for Christ’s Sake? Not Anymore.

Christians, even pastors (perhaps especially pastors), are no longer content to be “fools for Christ’s sake” as Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 4:10, instead we are looking for validation from the world. This quest for respectability has affected not only our view of salvation, but also the Bible, redemptive history, and ethics as well.

Many pastors are no longer satisfied with being known as men of the Word. In fact, many don’t even aspire to be men of the Word or shepherds. They instead want to be validated as experts in administration or church growth (i.e., marketing) and thus the nature of the church is also changed from a living organism or a flock to a corporation or a business as the role of the pastor as shepherd becomes pastor as CEO or pastor as “Chief Strategic Officer.”

1 Corinthians 4:9-13:

9 For I think that God has displayed us, the apostles, last, as men condemned to death; for we have been made a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men. 10 We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are distinguished, but we are dishonored! 11 To the present hour we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless. 12 And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure; 13 being defamed, we entreat. We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now.


About Michael R. Jones

Pastor and PhD candidate writing on Paul's theology of suffering.
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