The Mind of Christ

Paul continues to tell the Corinthians that his goal, while he was there in Corinth, was to stay away from preaching and arguments that would be considered wise to the world, and instead speak with the wisdom of God. It would only be considered wisdom to those whom the Spirit had revealed the truth.

But to do this, Paul says that while he was with them, he simply sought to know Christ and him crucified. And this is the source of everything that Paul was doing. Because he sought to know Christ, he would have the wisdom that he would need to be able to speak to the Corinthians of the wonders of God.

Jesus told his disciples this very thing when he was with them. In John 15, he said that he is the vine and they are the branches. They must stay connected with him or else they would be cut off, fall to the ground, wither, and die. Only by staying connected to Christ can we produce fruit.

Now we see Paul saying something similar, that he sought only to know Christ, and because he did, he was able to speak with wisdom from Christ. Jesus is the source of Paul’s wisdom. Nothing more.

But how would Paul do that? The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John hadn’t yet been written. No, but the books that we now call the Old Testament had already been written and were available to Paul. In fact, we routinely see that Paul reasoned from the scriptures with the Jews, explaining that Jesus had to be the Messiah given the arc of the historical story told by the scriptures, given the prophecies that Jesus fulfilled, and given all that Jesus had done. Paul sought to know Jesus through what was told about him and through what was known of what he had done.

But Paul also knew Christ because of what God gave him as he believed in Christ. Paul received the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, and it is from the Spirit as his source, speaking within him, that he was now able to reason from the scriptures and reflect upon the wisdom of God.

Paul says that it is impossible for one person to know what another person is thinking. Only the person’s spirit inside of them can possibly know what that other person is thinking.

But in our case, we have received the Holy Spirit. He has made us to be a new creature, a new creation. And that new creation carries within it the actual Spirit of God. Now, because we carry the Spirit of God, we have within us access to God’s thoughts. We have within us the ability of know the internal depths of God, and because we can know God this intimately, we can understand him and his wisdom for us.

The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, for,

“Who has known the mind of the Lord
so as to instruct him?”

But we have the mind of Christ.

1 Corinthians 2:10-16

I want to make note here that Paul says that we have the mind of Christ. He is writing to the Corinthians saying that they too have the mind of Christ. They have also received the Holy Spirit. They can understand the deep things of God. They can perceive and understand the wisdom of God. This is available to them as well.

And so also us. If we have believed in Christ and have received the Holy Spirit, we also can understand the depths of the wisdom of God. We must continue to dig. We must continue to explore. We must continue to ask, seek, and knock, but as we do, we can know Christ and him crucified more and more. We can know the wisdom of God and continue to help others do the same.

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