1 Corinthians 1-4 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
Greeting. 1 Paul, called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,[b] and Sosthenes our brother, 2 to the church of God that is in Corinth, to you who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be holy, with all those everywhere who call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours. 3 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thanksgiving. 4 I give thanks to my God always on your account for the grace of God bestowed on you in Christ Jesus, 5 that in him you were enriched in every way, with all discourse and all knowledge, 6 as the testimony[c] to Christ was confirmed among you, 7 so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift as you wait for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ. 8 He will keep you firm to the end, irreproachable on the day of our Lord Jesus [Christ]. 9 God is faithful, and by him you were called to fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
II. Disorders in the Corinthian Community
A. Divisions in the Church[d]
Groups and Slogans. 10 I urge you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and in the same purpose. 11 For it has been reported to me about you, my brothers, by Chloe’s people, that there are rivalries among you. 12 I mean that each of you is saying, “I belong to[e] Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” 13 [f]Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14 I give thanks [to God] that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one can say you were baptized in my name. 16 (I baptized the household of Stephanas also; beyond that I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) 17 [g]For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with the wisdom of human eloquence,[h] so that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its meaning.
Paradox of the Cross. 18 The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written:
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
20 Where is the wise one? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made the wisdom of the world foolish? 21 [i]For since in the wisdom of God the world did not come to know God through wisdom, it was the will of God through the foolishness of the proclamation to save those who have faith. 22 For Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, 23 but we proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, 24 but to those who are called, Jews and Greeks alike, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.
The Corinthians and Paul.[j] 26 Consider your own calling, brothers. Not many of you were wise by human standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. 27 Rather, God chose the foolish of the world to shame the wise, and God chose the weak of the world to shame the strong, 28 and God chose the lowly and despised of the world, those who count for nothing, to reduce to nothing those who are something, 29 so that no human being might boast[k] before God. 30 It is due to him that you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God, as well as righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, 31 so that, as it is written, “Whoever boasts, should boast in the Lord.”
1 When I came to you, brothers, proclaiming the mystery of God,[l] I did not come with sublimity of words or of wisdom. 2 For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ, and him crucified. 3 I came to you in weakness[m] and fear and much trembling, 4 and my message and my proclamation were not with persuasive [words of] wisdom,[n] but with a demonstration of spirit and power, 5 so that your faith might rest not on human wisdom but on the power of God.
The True Wisdom.[o] 6 Yet we do speak a wisdom to those who are mature, but not a wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age who are passing away. 7 Rather, we speak God’s wisdom,[p] mysterious, hidden, which God predetermined before the ages for our glory, 8 and which none of the rulers of this age[q] knew; for, if they had known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9 But as it is written:
“What eye has not seen, and ear has not heard,
10 this God has revealed to us through the Spirit.
For the Spirit scrutinizes everything, even the depths of God. 11 Among human beings, who knows what pertains to a person except the spirit of the person that is within? Similarly, no one knows what pertains to God except the Spirit of God. 12 We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit that is from God, so that we may understand the things freely given us by God. 13 And we speak about them not with words taught by human wisdom, but with words taught by the Spirit, describing spiritual realities in spiritual terms.[r]
14 Now the natural person[s] does not accept what pertains to the Spirit of God, for to him it is foolishness, and he cannot understand it, because it is judged spiritually. 15 The spiritual person, however, can judge everything but is not subject to judgment[t] by anyone.
16 For “who has known the mind of the Lord, so as to counsel him?” But we have the mind of Christ.
1 [u]Brothers, I could not talk to you as spiritual people, but as fleshly people,[v] as infants in Christ. 2 I fed you milk, not solid food, because you were unable to take it. Indeed, you are still not able, even now, 3 for you are still of the flesh. While there is jealousy and rivalry among you,[w] are you not of the flesh and behaving in an ordinary human way? 4 Whenever someone says, “I belong to Paul,” and another, “I belong to Apollos,” are you not merely human?
The Role of God’s Ministers.[x] 5 What is Apollos, after all, and what is Paul? Ministers[y] through whom you became believers, just as the Lord assigned each one. 6 I planted, Apollos watered, but God caused the growth. 7 Therefore, neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who causes the growth. 8 The one who plants and the one who waters are equal, and each will receive wages in proportion to his labor. 9 For we are God’s co-workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.
10 [z]According to the grace of God given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building upon it. But each one must be careful how he builds upon it, 11 for no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there, namely, Jesus Christ. 12 If anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, 13 the work of each will come to light, for the Day[aa] will disclose it. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire [itself] will test the quality of each one’s work. 14 If the work stands that someone built upon the foundation, that person will receive a wage. 15 But if someone’s work is burned up, that one will suffer loss; the person will be saved,[ab] but only as through fire. 16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for the temple of God, which you are, is holy.[ac]
18 Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you considers himself wise in this age, let him become a fool so as to become wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in the eyes of God, for it is written:
“He catches the wise in their own ruses,”
20 and again:
“The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.”
21 [ad]So let no one boast about human beings, for everything belongs to you, 22 Paul or Apollos or Cephas, or the world or life or death, or the present or the future: all belong to you, 23 and you to Christ, and Christ to God.
1 Thus should one regard us: as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. 2 Now it is of course required of stewards that they be found trustworthy. 3 It does not concern me in the least that I be judged by you or any human tribunal; I do not even pass judgment on myself; 4 I am not conscious of anything against me, but I do not thereby stand acquitted; the one who judges me is the Lord. 5 Therefore, do not make any judgment before the appointed time, until the Lord comes, for he will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will manifest the motives of our hearts, and then everyone will receive praise from God.
Paul’s Life as Pattern.[ae] 6 I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, brothers, so that you may learn from us not to go beyond what is written,[af] so that none of you will be inflated with pride in favor of one person over against another. 7 Who confers distinction upon you? What do you possess that you have not received? But if you have received it, why are you boasting as if you did not receive it? 8 You are already satisfied; you have already grown rich; you have become kings[ag] without us! Indeed, I wish that you had become kings, so that we also might become kings with you.
9 [ah]For as I see it, God has exhibited us apostles as the last of all, like people sentenced to death, since we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels and human beings alike. 10 We are fools on Christ’s account, but you are wise in Christ; we are weak, but you are strong; you are held in honor, but we in disrepute. 11 To this very hour we go hungry and thirsty, we are poorly clad and roughly treated, we wander about homeless 12 and we toil, working with our own hands. When ridiculed, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; 13 when slandered, we respond gently. We have become like the world’s rubbish, the scum of all, to this very moment.
14 I am writing you this not to shame you, but to admonish you as my beloved children.[ai] 15 Even if you should have countless guides to Christ, yet you do not have many fathers, for I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. 16 Therefore, I urge you, be imitators of me. 17 For this reason I am sending you Timothy, who is my beloved and faithful son in the Lord; he will remind you of my ways in Christ [Jesus], just as I teach them everywhere in every church.
18 [aj]Some have become inflated with pride, as if I were not coming to you. 19 But I will come to you soon, if the Lord is willing, and I shall ascertain not the talk of these inflated people but their power. 20 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power. 21 Which do you prefer? Shall I come to you with a rod, or with love and a gentle spirit?