Paradox of the Cross. 18The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.k 19For it is written:
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
and the learning of the learned I will set aside.”l
20Where is the wise one? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made the wisdom of the world foolish?m 21* For since in the wisdom of God the world did not come to know God through wisdom, it was the will of God through the foolishness of the proclamation to save those who have faith. 22For Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom,n 23but we proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles,o 24but to those who are called, Jews and Greeks alike, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.
The Commissioning of the Eleven. 14h [But] later, as the eleven were at table, he appeared to them and rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart because they had not believed those who saw him after he had been raised. 15i He said to them, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature. 16Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will drive out demons, they will speak new languages. 18They will pick up serpents [with their hands], and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them. They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”j