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BIBLE STUDY: Embracing godly wisdom

NASHVILLE (BP) — This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with Lifeway Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, Lifeway publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.

This week’s Bible study is adapted from the YOU curriculum.

Bible Passage: I Corinthians 2:6-16

Discussion Questions:

— What are some ways God’s wisdom differs from worldly wisdom?

— How do we access God’s wisdom through His Spirit?

— How do we see the world differently as followers of Jesus?

Food for Thought:

In the hit movie Overcomer, a basketball coach named John Harrison is on the verge of making some noise with next year’s team. But the next school year entered with the town’s largest manufacturing plant closing and hundreds of people moving away. Coach John agreed to coach cross-country racing, a novice endeavor for him. With only one runner, Hannah Scott, an asthmatic athlete who was experiencing family issues, John began to coach. He trained Hannah to run the cross-country course. With the help of others, he trained her how to run the ultimate race of her life.

Like the movie depicted, believers desperately seek advice about living life for God’s glory. In this session, we will learn how the Holy Spirit helps saints live in ways that are pleasing to God.

Read 1 Corinthians 2:6-16. Like the apostles before us, believers with minds anointed by divine discernment and the authority of Scripture possess a cohesive worldview and insight into truth. These help us know how to live holy lives that are set apart, even when we find ourselves alone, confused, deserted or estranged.

When communicating to others using the authority of Scripture, God can use us to speak truth into people’s lives. This uncommon wisdom is a mystery to many around us, including many societal, educational, political and religious leaders.

Now, as in Paul’s time, believers speaking truth given by the Spirit and Word of God are mocked and made the target of others’ derision and ridicule. That same spirit of antichrist is the one which led to the crucifixion of our Lord. That same spirit is a source of persecution for Christians today.

God’s children must reject the thought that any of our spiritual insights represent our own intellectual brilliance. We should also disavow other people’s praise of what they consider our own shrewd thinking or penetrating discernment. Any genuinely valuable insight we have is nothing more than a reflection from the Person of God. Even so, the student of Scripture who submits to the Holy Spirit often encounters truths that are too wonderful for us and too lofty to attain (Psalm 139:6).

Without the Holy Spirit, our minds can easily be misled and spiritually exploited (1 Peter 1:13). But with the help of the Spirit of God, the mind of Christ that’s within us can help us understand more of God’s will (Romans 12:2; 1 Corinthians 2:16). That is why the mind must be guarded and focused on godly things (Philippians 4:8).

As believers consider the wonder of how God created us, we must understand that without the ministry of the Holy Spirit, we are utterly incapable of understanding the things of God (1 Corinthians 2:11-12). A mind unsubmitted to the authority of the Holy Spirit will unwittingly find its way to distort truth or misunderstand God’s actions in our lives.

God’s Word refers to those who have not been born again as being “without the Spirit.” The unredeemed part of the human self is sometimes called the “old self” (Romans 6:6; Ephesians 4:22; Colossians 3:9). This unsaved person doesn’t have the capacity to fully appreciate or interpret godly things. Such a person’s thought process is so spiritually upside-down compared to divine wisdom, that God’s point of view is considered foolishness.

The child of God is able to evaluate everything through this enhanced spiritual discernment, but must still have the courage to reject concerns about the disfavor of others. These attributes are a part of what it means to develop a biblical worldview.


YOU is committed to providing a complete Bible study experience for small groups and classes. Every session is written through an urban and multiethnic lens that provides relevant, engaging and applicable studies that not only encourage and equip people, but also motivate them to mission. This flexible, non-dated, all-in-one quarterly resource offers weekly Bible study for leaders and learners, devotionals and teaching plans, as well as articles on hot topics and missions. For additional downloadable online teaching resources, visit You.Lifeway.com.

Other ongoing Bible study options for all ages offered by Lifeway can be found at Lifeway.com/SundaySchool or ordered at Lifeway.com.