1. Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, and Sosthenes, our brother,
2. to the church of God in Corinth, to those who have been consecrated in Christ Jesus and called to be God's holy people, with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord as well as ours.
3. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
4. I am continually thanking God about you, for the grace of God which you have been given in Christ Jesus;
5. in him you have been richly endowed in every kind of utterance and knowledge;
6. so firmly has witness to Christ taken root in you.
7. And so you are not lacking in any gift as you wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed;
8. he will continue to give you strength till the very end, so that you will be irreproachable on the Day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9. You can rely on God, who has called you to be partners with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
10. Brothers, I urge you, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, not to have factions among yourselves but all to be in agreement in what you profess; so that you are perfectly united in your beliefs and judgements.
11. From what Chloe's people have been telling me about you, brothers, it is clear that there are serious differences among you.
12. What I mean is this: every one of you is declaring, 'I belong to Paul,' or 'I belong to Apollos,' or 'I belong to Cephas,' or 'I belong to Christ.'
13. Has Christ been split up? Was it Paul that was crucified for you, or was it in Paul's name that you were baptised?
14. I am thankful I did not baptise any of you, except Crispus and Gaius,
15. so that no one can say that you were baptised in my name.
16. Yes, I did baptise the family of Stephanas, too; but besides these I do not think I baptised anyone.
17. After all, Christ sent me not to baptise, but to preach the gospel; and not by means of wisdom of language, wise words which would make the cross of Christ pointless.
18. The message of the cross is folly for those who are on the way to ruin, but for those of us who are on the road to salvation it is the power of God.
19. As scripture says: I am going to destroy the wisdom of the wise and bring to nothing the understanding of any who understand.
20. Where are the philosophers? Where are the experts? And where are the debaters of this age? Do you not see how God has shown up human wisdom as folly?
21. Since in the wisdom of God the world was unable to recognise God through wisdom, it was God's own pleasure to save believers through the folly of the gospel.
22. While the Jews demand miracles and the Greeks look for wisdom,
23. we are preaching a crucified Christ: to the Jews an obstacle they cannot get over, to the gentiles foolishness,
24. but to those who have been called, whether they are Jews or Greeks, a Christ who is both the power of God and the wisdom of God.
25. God's folly is wiser than human wisdom, and God's weakness is stronger than human strength.
26. Consider, brothers, how you were called; not many of you are wise by human standards, not many influential, not many from noble families.
27. No, God chose those who by human standards are fools to shame the wise; he chose those who by human standards are weak to shame the strong,
28. those who by human standards are common and contemptible -- indeed those who count for nothing -- to reduce to nothing all those that do count for something,
29. so that no human being might feel boastful before God.
30. It is by him that you exist in Christ Jesus, who for us was made wisdom from God, and saving justice and holiness and redemption.
31. As scripture says: If anyone wants to boast, let him boast of the Lord.