1 Corinthians 1:12, I am of Paul. Truly it is amazing how many scriptural admonitions and truths which many in the Christian church totally ignore and walk in direct opposition to. For example, note how many denominations are named after men (e.g. Lutheran, Wesleyan, Mennonite, Amish) and how many follow doctrines named after men (e.g. Calvanist, Arminian)—a practice that is exactly what Paul condemns in this passage. Similar to this is the use of ecclesiastical titles (e.g. father, teacher or rabbi), which Yeshua condemns in Matthew 23:8–10. What does this teach us when people engage in such practices that Scripture forbids? Simply this. Many if not most people don’t take the Word of Elohim that seriously. These people view the commands and instructions of Scripture more as suggestions than as actual rules and boundaries by which to live. Such people lack a sufficient fear of Elohim and don’t tremble before his Word (Isa 66:2). They also lift up and glory in men and the doctrines and traditions of men, which Jeremiah admonishes us not to do (Jer 9:23), and which Paul alludes to in verse 30, and which Yeshua warns against in Mark 7:13.
1 Corinthians 1:18, The message of the cross is foolishness. Anyone who has preached the gospel to those who are spiritually lost will appreciate Paul’s statement in this verse that the preaching of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing. Why is this? It is because of the mind of man and human pride, which convinces a person (a) that they don’t need saving from their sins because they really aren’t that bad of a person, or (b) because it is incredulous to think that Elohim become a man who died for the sins of the world.
1 Corinthians 1:21, The wisdom of Elohim. In so many ways, the world has inverted the truth of Elohim. What Elohim calls truth, the world calls error. What Elohim calls riches and life, the world calls poverty and death. Similarly, what Elohim calls light and wisdom, the world calls darkness and foolishness. This teaches us that the carnal mind is in direct opposition to the wisdom, truth and laws of Elohim (Jer 17:9; Rom 8:7).
1 Corinthians 1:22, We preach Messiah crucified. This is the essence of the gospel. It is interesting to note that Paul didn’t say, “We preach the Torah-law” or something similar. This is because the Torah cannot save a person; only Messiah can save. In their zeal for restoring the truth of the Torah and their aversion to mainstream Christianity (or churchianity), sadly many Hebraic-minded individuals have forgotten this important truth.
1 Corinthians 2
1 Corinthians 2:1, 3–4, Excellence of speech…persuasive words. A preacher’s oratorical, persuasive or rhetorical skills are not prerequisite to bring a person to conviction of their sins and to faith in Yeshua the Messiah. Rather, it is the message of the gospel itself, the Word of Elohim, when preached that brings conviction, repentance and salvation. This is because the Word of Elohim doesn’t return void, but carries its own powerful anointing regardless of the weakness or inabilities of the human vessel doing the preaching. Elohim can use any willing vessel or “Balaam’s donkey” to preach the gospel.
Spirit and power. The gospel is efficacious not because of one’s ability to preach, but because one is filled with the Spirit of Elohim and is preaching in the dynamic power thereof. Therefore, YHVH can use nearly anyone to preach the gospel, as long as they are full of his Spirit. As the saying goes, Elohim isn’t looking for ability in a person, but availability—a willing human vessel to “go ye therefore into all the world and to preach the gospel.”
1 Corinthians 2:16, Mind of Messiah. (See also Phil 2:5 cp. 1 Pet 4:1.) Mind is the Greek word nooce meaning “1) the mind, comprising alike the faculties of perceiving and understanding and those of feeling, judging, determining, the intellectual faculty, the understanding, reason in the narrower sense, as the capacity for spiritual truth, the higher powers of the soul, the faculty of perceiving divine things, of recognizing goodness and of hating evil, the power of considering and judging soberly, calmly and impartially; a particular mode of thinking and judging, i.e thoughts, feelings, purposes, desires.” The implications of this truth, that the redeemed believer has the literal mind of Messiah is astounding. We must, by YHVH’s grace and by faith, appropriate (pray to receive) and then live out this reality.