1 Corinthians 3:5-4:21, Psalm 58
Like the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing (1 Corinthians 1:18), so we are to live foolishly according to the world’s standards (1 Corinthians 3:18). What does such foolishness mean? It means to stop putting our trust, allegiance, and confidence in human leaders (1 Corinthians 3:20-21). Jesus is the one who ensures we have everything we need, so that even Paul and Apollos, not to mention eternal life are gifts to us from Christ. Thus it is sad that Christians seem to be, as one pastor put, “looking for mini-popes” to get excited about. We desire to have people that we can rally around in such a fragmented world, whether those are leaders in the church, or even movie stars that boast in the name of Jesus. This adoration is often justified with too much hope placed in those we desire to “make great kingdom impact.” Don’t imagine I am minimizing the importance of those God has chosen for unique positions in government, entertainment, sports, or the marketplace. Rather, I am criticizing our tendency to reflect the world’s tribalistic adoration for seemingly incredible individuals. All of our leaders, whether they be missionaries, pastors, governors, and all of the famous in athletics, film, or music ought be appreciated, but never worshipped. Paul knows the world wants its Caesars, but there is only One fit to rule over all. So let’s be foolish in the way Paul means and treat our leaders, or those with influence, with due respect. This means we have proper recognition that whatever good they have, they received it from God (1 Corinthians 3:6-7).