Some years ago, I received a letter from a pastor out in western Canada who was asking a number of questions about what he perceived to be contradictions in the pages of the Word of God. I could not tell from his letter whether this was a genuine question or whether he was one of those people who already have their mind made up and was just giving, in the form of questions, the reason why he would not believe that the Bible is the Word of God. But I took his questions seriously and I answered them at some length.

In 1 Corinthians Paul is talking about how people suppress the knowledge of God in nature. He says the result is what he quotes from the Old Testament: "No eye has seen, nor ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him." Is that because there is nothing to be seen? No, it is there to be seen. We just do not see it. Is that because God has not spoken? No, he has spoken, but we do not hear. Is that because the Gospel cannot be understood by the operation of the human mind? No, the Gospel is the great wisdom of God. But although we have minds, we do not put them to task.

"But God because of the great love he has for us has made us alive in Christ." Those are Paul’s words as they are written in the second chapter of Ephesians (v. 4). In this verse, and in many others like it, there is a great contrast highlighted in the words "but God." Those two words also occur in the fifth chapter of Romans. There, Paul says that for the love of a good man, someone might be bold enough to die. Then in the next verse we read, "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Rom. 5:8). On one hand, you have what is possible with man. Then the God of the impossible is brought in.

Yesterday we looked at how the Jews, the Greeks, and the Romans were all offended by Paul’s message of the cross. So what did Paul do when faced with this opposition? When he preached to the Romans, he preached Christ crucified in weakness, but in the power of God. When he preached to the Jews, he preached Christ, who came not as a sign, but to die and give his life as a ransom for many in the power of God. When he preached to the Greeks, he did not preach Christ, the wisdom of man, but Christ, the simple Gospel, the simple Savior who died in order that we might be saved. And that was the power of God to the Greeks, as well as to the Jews, as well as to the Romans.

Theories will come and go. Today's theory about psychology, or sociology, or science is very quickly superseded by another theory. We know perfectly well how passing all of that is. Yet, there is the Gospel, which endures, which is based on the very nature of God (who is reality himself) and which changes not. The world says, "Oh, all that is foolishness."