Monday, March 16, 2009

Princes of this World?

An anonymous reader asked: In 1st Corinthians 2:7-8 who do you think are the "princes of this world"? and what is their goal? Thanks in advance.

I answer:

1 Corinthians 2:6-8
6 Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: 7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: 8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

The princes of this world refers either specifically to the Jewish leaders or to both the Jewish and Roman leaders. Either way, the point is that those with power in this world did not, when Christ came, recognize who he was. Thus, the bigger point is that not only are the general masses of the world spiritually unwise, but so also are the elite of this world.

Their goals are not mentioned specifically in the passage. Generally, the princes of this world seek for themselves power, riches, and glory in this life. In contrast, in this life we receive persecution and sometimes death, but we seek good things in the life to come, because we seek the city of God.



tbrooksfan said...

Good afternoon brother Turretinfan. Have a good question for you. Looking at our society nowadays there is an extreme loss of humility. We have grown accustomed to make ourselves the ultimate solution to all problems, yet we will not go back to History to see how the men of greatness responded to the human nature and God's sovereignty in all. Dr James White was correct that our children live in the IPod world and will not pick up a book unless its read to them. I gave my daughter Max McCleans through the bible she loves it and is doing bible study daily. Here is my question where do you draw the line from being to antinomian and the other end legalistic? Some brothers/sisters have been saved from abject addictions of alcohol/drug abuse and sexual concupiscence. God's grace reaches to depths of human depravity and washes us through the blood of Christ. Looking at the great Puritan writers how would they respond to a question of living a life in holiness and relying to much on self and not on Christ?

Thomas Brooks would respond with humility, prayer and engage not on your own strength but constantly seek the Lord Jesus.

The Apostle Paul puts it well. Walk in the Spirit and you will not fulfill the desires of the flesh.

Turretinfan said...


Thanks for your comment. You left me another on another thread about Turretin's view on sanctification, if I recall. I hope to get to that comment in a few days.

"where do you draw the line from being to antinomian and the other end legalistic?"

You avoid antinomianism by realizing that the law is good. The law shows us our sin and it also shows us how we should live our lives.

You avoid legalism by realizing that the law does not save. Only Christ saves, and we appropriate that salvation with the empty hand of faith.

Thus, we follow the law out of love for Him who saved us: demonstrating our faith by our works.


tbrooksfan said...

Interesting how in History you see the movement of others that stop following the Word they fall into the traps of antinomianism and legalism. It was the same in Paul's time and the errors persist to this day. Having a firm understanding of God's mercy and God's justice is key. Thanks for your response brother Turretinfan.