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The word `besides' can be employed in the passage before us and the truth maintained.
"But of Him, are ye in Christ Jesus, Who of God is made unto us, wisdom, besides
righteousness, sanctification and redemption" (I Cor. 1: 30).
It appears that the Corinthians were already possessed of the fact that righteousness,
sanctification and redemption were theirs, what the Apostle would have them recognize
was that in the self same way `wisdom' too was theirs in Christ. This was a truth that
would be somewhat humbling to a Greek, for the Greeks sought after wisdom, even as
the Jews sought after righteousness, and alas, both sought it in the power of the flesh.
Paul has been at great pains to show that "Jesus Christ and Him crucified" is the
Wisdom of God, despite even as the preaching of the cross is the Wisdom of God, despite
the fact that in the eyes of the "wise" such a message is "foolishness". This question of
wisdom and the natural man is pursued in the second chapter of I Corinthians, and in
chapter 3: the carnality of those who said "I am of Paul", "I am of Apollos", is exposed.
This leads at length to the close of the chapter which reintroduces the fact that all the
spiritual possessions of the believer are found in Christ.
"For all things are yours; whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life,
or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; and ye are Christ's; and
Christ is God's" (I Cor. 3: 21-23).
Here are some of our `possessions'. They are all ours. It is evident upon reading the
two epistles, that the Corinthians were far from entering experimentally into this treasure,
and it will be salutary to go over the ground now surveyed so that we too may learn what
to avoid, and how these things may become our own, not only as they are ours already
"in Christ Jesus", but in apprehension and life.
We shall have to give fuller heed to the repeated warning against `boasting' or
`glorying' in men or the flesh. We shall have to ponder what is implied in the words
`Who of God is made unto us'. We shall have to deal separately with the great gifts,
wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption. We shall need to consider what
is implied in the words "All things are yours", and to examine carefully the list given in
I Cor. 3: 22; a list that includes life and death, things present and things to come, and
finally we shall have to give the most earnest consideration to the climax and the seal of
all this teaching.
"And ye are Christ's: and Christ is God's."
To devote most precious and important aspects of truth, therefore, we must devote
ourselves in subsequent studies.