The One Year Coffee with God
   Devotion for Wednesday, May 09, 2012
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Selection Taken From:
The One Year Coffee with God: 365 Devotions to Perk Up Your Day by Sarah Arthur

There's nothing quite like the aroma of freshly brewed coffee to start your day. And what better way to spend those first few morning moments than in quiet reflection with God? In a warm, casual, conversational style, Sarah Arthur takes you on a transformational journey as she explores both the subtle and the startling ways God transforms us through daily spiritual routines such as prayer and living simply. Part personal story and part spiritual search, The One Year Coffee with God will fill your cup with plenty of brew for thought. Softcover from Tyndale House Publisher's Inc. Copyright 2011.

Forget Eloquence

Christ didn't send me to baptize, but to preach the Good News—and not with
clever speech, for fear that the cross of Christ would lose its power.
- 1 Corinthians 1:17

This is an odd idea of Paul's, that he would feel led to proclaim the gospel to the Greeks without eloquence. From all we know of him, Paul was one of the MOSt brilliant men of his time: quite likely trained in classical debate and able to converse with the best minds in the marketplaces and synagogues of the ancient world. He wowed the Greeks of Athens in Acts 17 by quoting their own poets; he stunned governors and kings with his wit, even prompting one of them to exclaim, "Do you think you can persuade me to become a Christian so quickly?" (Acts 26:28). For all intents and purposes, this might have been exactly why God chose Paul in the first place: to pack a polemical punch. If anything impressed the ancient world, it was eloquence.
     But for some reason—perhaps because his audience was impressed by it—Paul felt that to speak with his usual power would water down the potency of the gospel. It would put the focus on Paul rather than on the Cross. The Good News would've become merely one among many finely crafted arguments, promoting yet another trendy school of thought, whereas a simple presentation of the gospel, without frills, would've highlighted the truth in such a way that the Greeks would have been both repelled by its seeming "foolishness" and compelled by its bare-bones grace.
     Paul wrote to the converted Greeks and Jews in Corinth, "When I first came to you, dear brothers and sisters, I didn't use lofty words and impressive wisdom to tell you God's secret plan" (1 Corinthians 2: I ). For an inveterate babbler like me, who stumbles over her words in an attempt to sound brilliant, this is good news. Keep it simple, stupid!

1 Corinthians 1:17-25

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