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Acts 18:24-19:20Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

The Eloquent Apollos

24 A Jew named Apollos, a native Alexandrian, an eloquent man who was powerful in the use of the Scriptures, arrived in Ephesus. 25 This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit,[a] he spoke and taught the things about Jesus accurately, although he knew only John’s baptism. 26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. After Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him home[b] and explained the way of God to him more accurately. 27 When he wanted to cross over to Achaia, the brothers wrote to the disciples urging them to welcome him. After he arrived, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace. 28 For he vigorously refuted the Jews in public, demonstrating through the Scriptures that Jesus is the Messiah.

Twelve Disciples of John the Baptist

19 While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul traveled through the interior regions and came to Ephesus. He found some disciples and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”

“No,” they told him, “we haven’t even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”

“Then what baptism were you baptized with?” he asked them.

“With John’s baptism,” they replied.

Paul said, “John baptized with a baptism of repentance, telling the people that they should believe in the One who would come after him, that is, in Jesus.”

When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began to speak in other languages and to prophesy. Now there were about 12 men in all.

In the Lecture Hall of Tyrannus

Then he entered the synagogue and spoke boldly over a period of three months, engaging in discussion and trying to persuade them about the things of the kingdom of God. But when some became hardened and would not believe, slandering the Way in front of the crowd, he withdrew from them and met separately with the disciples, conducting discussions every day in the lecture hall of Tyrannus. 10 And this went on for two years, so that all the inhabitants of Asia, both Jews and Greeks, heard the message about the Lord.

Demonism Defeated at Ephesus

11 God was performing extraordinary miracles by Paul’s hands, 12 so that even facecloths or work aprons[c] that had touched his skin were brought to the sick, and the diseases left them, and the evil spirits came out of them.

13 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists attempted to pronounce the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “I command you by the Jesus that Paul preaches!” 14 Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 The evil spirit answered them, “I know Jesus, and I recognize Paul—but who are you?” 16 Then the man who had the evil spirit leaped on them, overpowered them all, and prevailed against them, so that they ran out of that house naked and wounded. 17 This became known to everyone who lived in Ephesus, both Jews and Greeks. Then fear fell on all of them, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. 18 And many who had become believers came confessing and disclosing their practices, 19 while many of those who had practiced magic collected their books and burned them in front of everyone. So they calculated their value and found it to be 50,000 pieces of silver. 20 In this way the Lord’s message flourished and prevailed.

Footnotes:

  1. Acts 18:25 Or in the Spirit
  2. Acts 18:26 Lit they received him
  3. Acts 19:12 Or that also sweatbands and sweatcloths or handkerchiefs

1 Corinthians 1-3Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

Greeting

Paul, called as an apostle of Christ Jesus by God’s will, and Sosthenes our brother:

To God’s church at Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus and called as saints, with all those in every place who call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord—both their Lord and ours.

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Thanksgiving

I always thank my God for you because of God’s grace given to you in Christ Jesus, that by Him you were enriched in everything—in all speech and all knowledge. In this way, the testimony about Christ was confirmed among you, so that you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ. He will also strengthen you to the end, so that you will be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful; you were called by Him into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Divisions at Corinth

10 Now I urge you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, that there be no divisions among you, and that you be united with the same understanding and the same conviction. 11 For it has been reported to me about you, my brothers, by members of Chloe’s household, that there is rivalry among you. 12 What I am saying is this: Each of you says, “I’m with Paul,” or “I’m with Apollos,” or “I’m with Cephas,” or “I’m with Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? Was it Paul who was crucified for you? Or were you baptized in Paul’s name? 14 I thank God[a][b] 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 did, in fact, baptize the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don’t know if I baptized anyone else. 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to evangelize—not with clever words, so that the cross of Christ will not be emptied of its effect.

Christ the Power and Wisdom of God

18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but it is God’s power to us who are being saved. 19 For it is written:

I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
and I will set aside the understanding of the experts.[c]

20 Where is the philosopher?[d] Where is the scholar? Where is the debater of this age? Hasn’t God made the world’s wisdom foolish? 21 For since, in God’s wisdom, the world did not know God through wisdom, God was pleased to save those who believe through the foolishness of the message preached. 22 For the Jews ask for signs and the Greeks seek wisdom, 23 but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to the Gentiles.[e] 24 Yet to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ is God’s power and God’s wisdom, 25 because God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom, and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength.

Boasting Only in the Lord

26 Brothers, consider your calling: Not many are wise from a human perspective,[f] not many powerful, not many of noble birth. 27 Instead, God has chosen what is foolish in the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen what is weak in the world to shame the strong. 28 God has chosen what is insignificant and despised in the world—what is viewed as nothing—to bring to nothing what is viewed as something, 29 so that no one[g] can boast in His presence. 30 But it is from Him that you are in Christ Jesus, who became God-given wisdom for us—our righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, 31 in order that, as it is written: The one who boasts must boast in the Lord.[h]

Paul’s Proclamation

When I came to you, brothers, announcing the testimony[i] of God to you, I did not come with brilliance of speech or wisdom. For I didn’t think it was a good idea to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I came to you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. My speech and my proclamation were not with persuasive words of wisdom[j] but with a powerful demonstration by the Spirit, so that your faith might not be based on men’s wisdom but on God’s power.

Spiritual Wisdom

However, we do speak a wisdom among the mature, but not a wisdom of this age, or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. On the contrary, we speak God’s hidden wisdom in a mystery, a wisdom God predestined before the ages for our glory. None of the rulers of this age knew this wisdom, for if they had known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written:

What eye did not see and ear did not hear,
and what never entered the human mind—
God prepared this for those who love Him.[k]

10 Now God has revealed these things to us by the Spirit, for the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. 11 For who among men knows the thoughts[l] of a man except the spirit of the man that is in him? In the same way, no one knows the thoughts[m] of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who comes from God, so that we may understand what has been freely given to us by God. 13 We also speak these things, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual things to spiritual people.[n] 14 But the unbeliever[o] does not welcome what comes from God’s Spirit, because it is foolishness to him; he is not able to understand it since it is evaluated[p] spiritually. 15 The spiritual person, however, can evaluate[q] everything, yet he himself cannot be evaluated[r] by anyone. 16 For

who has known the Lord’s mind,
that he may instruct Him?[s]

But we have the mind of Christ.

The Problem of Immaturity

Brothers, I was not able to speak to you as spiritual people but as people of the flesh, as babies in Christ. I gave you milk to drink, not solid food, because you were not yet ready for it. In fact, you are still not ready, because you are still fleshly. For since there is envy and strife[t] among you, are you not fleshly and living like unbelievers?[u] For whenever someone says, “I’m with Paul,” and another, “I’m with Apollos,” are you not unspiritual people?[v][w]

The Role of God’s Servants

What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? They are servants through whom you believed, and each has the role the Lord has given. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. Now the one planting and the one watering are one in purpose, and each will receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are God’s coworkers.[x] You are God’s field, God’s building. 10 According to God’s grace that was given to me, I have laid a foundation as a skilled master builder, and another builds on it. But each one must be careful how he builds on it. 11 For no one can lay any other foundation than what has been laid down. That foundation is Jesus Christ. 12 If anyone builds on that foundation with gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay, or straw, 13 each one’s work will become obvious, for the day[y] will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire; the fire will test the quality of each one’s work. 14 If anyone’s work that he has built survives, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone’s work is burned up, it will be lost, but he will be saved; yet it will be like an escape through fire.[z]

16 Don’t you yourselves know that you are God’s sanctuary and that the Spirit of God lives in you? 17 If anyone destroys God’s sanctuary, God will destroy him; for God’s sanctuary is holy, and that is what you are.

The Folly of Human Wisdom

18 No one should deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks he is wise in this age, he must become foolish so that he can become wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God, since it is written: He catches the wise in their craftiness;[aa] 20 and again, The Lord knows that the reasonings of the wise are meaningless.[ab] 21 So no one should boast in human leaders, for everything is yours 22 whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or things present or things to come—everything is yours, 23 and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Corinthians 1:14 Other mss omit God
  2. 1 Corinthians 1:14 Or I am thankful
  3. 1 Corinthians 1:19 Is 29:14
  4. 1 Corinthians 1:20 Or wise
  5. 1 Corinthians 1:23 Other mss read Greeks
  6. 1 Corinthians 1:26 Lit wise according to the flesh
  7. 1 Corinthians 1:29 Lit that not all flesh
  8. 1 Corinthians 1:31 Jr 9:24
  9. 1 Corinthians 2:1 Other mss read mystery
  10. 1 Corinthians 2:4 Other mss read human wisdom
  11. 1 Corinthians 2:9 Is 52:15; 64:4
  12. 1 Corinthians 2:11 Or things
  13. 1 Corinthians 2:11 Or things
  14. 1 Corinthians 2:13 Or things with spiritual words
  15. 1 Corinthians 2:14 Or unspiritual; lit natural
  16. 1 Corinthians 2:14 Or judged, or discerned
  17. 1 Corinthians 2:15 Or judge, or discern
  18. 1 Corinthians 2:15 Or judged, or discerned
  19. 1 Corinthians 2:16 Is 40:13
  20. 1 Corinthians 3:3 Other mss add and divisions
  21. 1 Corinthians 3:3 Lit and walking according to man
  22. 1 Corinthians 3:4 Other mss read are you not carnal
  23. 1 Corinthians 3:4 Lit not [just] human
  24. 1 Corinthians 3:9 Or are coworkers belonging to God
  25. 1 Corinthians 3:13 The day of Christ’s judgment of believers
  26. 1 Corinthians 3:15 Lit yet so as through fire
  27. 1 Corinthians 3:19 Jb 5:13
  28. 1 Corinthians 3:20 Ps 94:11

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