Paul's Resolve
1 Corinthians 2:2
For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

I. THE MEANING OF THE PHRASE. Those who believe in the atonement interpret it as a sacrifice for sin, and consider faith in it necessary to salvation. Others understand it as a bare fact, or as martyrdom for truth. The apostle, however, gives his own explanation (1 Corinthians 1:23, 24).


1. What is our condition?

(1) We are corrupted!

(2) Guilty — actually criminal, and this is the cause of eternal death.

2. This very condition it is which adapts the gospel to us. Try every other doctrine and see if it will do.

(1) True, it reveals the glory of God, but what avails all our knowledge of God if no sacrifice? The gospel discovers His goodness in glowing characters, but while this rises on the scene it is shaded by His justice.

(2) But you say, the gospel is a beautiful moral law for our guide. True; but what comfort is this to guilty man? Take the statute-book to the victim condemned to die; expatiate on the law he has violated; alas! he wants pardon, not law.

3. You say, there is the example of Jesus. Granted. We cannot study it too much; yet example is only law in action, and the former answer applies to it; if the law is unwelcome, so is its exhibition. And what is the fact? See the Jews. Was it not the excellence of the example which made them hate it?

4. You say, there are many promises in the gospel without that of Christ, or salvation by Christ. True; but hope cannot rest on them. The promise of a common providence, food, raiment, &c., is made; but we are guilty — and what are these if hell is to be our portion? And again, the promises are all to His people.

5. There is nothing, then, in the gospel on which to rest but the sacrificial death of Christ. Here, "what the law could not do," &c.


1. The Cross is of no use to us if we do not confess our corruptions, inability, and danger.

2. We see the certainty of pardon — all is hope in the gospel, and all certainty too. Say not that you are unworthy — all your unworthiness is assumed in the gospel — it justifies in the character of ungodly.

3. We see what is meant by living a life of faith in the Son of God, all flows from Him, all your petitions are presented by Him, the blood of Christ and faith in that blood are all that stand between you and God.

4. Pray that a ministry may ever be among you to preserve this doctrine.

(J. Summerfield, A.M.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

WEB: For I determined not to know anything among you, except Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

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