The “Wise” Fools
Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools.
After introducing himself in the first part of Romans 1 and sharing his confidence in the Good News of Christ, Paul begins to get into the substance of his theological exposition. It commences on a sad note. Though God could be known by all people through the glory of creation, people chose instead to make up their own ideas of God. “Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools.”
This line could serve as the epitaph for contemporary culture. There is so much “wisdom” out there that is, in the end, anything but wise. Today’s “wisdom” tells us that the Bible is antiquated, self-contradictory, and irrelevant, that getting power is everything, that human life is not sacred, that right and wrong is simply a matter of opinion or popular vote, that Jesus was just a confused man, or at most, an innocuous teacher, that we can’t know much about him anyway, and so on and so on. The spirit of this age is so contrary to biblical truth that we can become confused or even ashamed.
The world around us may never endorse the wisdom we receive from God. And it surely will never make peace with the “foolishness” of the cross. But we hold fast to a wisdom that is timeless and trustworthy, the very wisdom of God revealed in Jesus Christ.
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: Have you ever felt foolish because of your Christian faith? Or have you ever been embarrassed because your convictions were out of step with the culture? When? What helps you to hold on to God’s wisdom, even when it’s unpopular?
PRAYER: Dear Lord, I live in a world that prizes foolish wisdom, while rejecting true wisdom as foolish. Most of the time I can cling to your wisdom, thanks to the help of your Spirit. But I must confess there are times when I find myself buying into the “wisdom” of this world. Or perhaps I become ashamed of your wisdom because it seems so “old-fashioned.”
Forgive me, Lord, for the times when I chase after the foolishness of this world rather than embracing your wisdom. Help me to stand firm in your truth, no matter how others might regard it. May my life be a demonstration of your wisdom, in all I say and all I do. Amen.