First Importance – 1 Cor 15:3-6

“For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance : that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time” (1Cor 15:3-6)

These verses of the Apostle Paul’s letter to Corinth highlight the simplicity  and importance of the good news (the Gospel). Often when we ask people “what is the Gospel?” we are entertained with either a theological exposition of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, or a summary of the book of Romans. Sadly, we also often recieve  glazed looks or convoluted answers that bear no resemblance to the actual message.

Here, however, Paul summarises the message for us. Simply and concisely he  reminds the new converts at Corinth (many of whom being of Pagan ancestory) what the Gospel is and how it is the most prominent of all the teachings he has given them. The life, death and resurrection of Christ. God’s grace for the forgiveness of sin (John 3:16). This is the Gospel.

Paul employs the Greek word πρῶτος (prōtos) translated of ‘first importance’ in the opening verse.It may also be rendered “pertaining to being superior in value to all other items of the same class—‘best.’” Paul is letting the Corinthian’s know this ‘good news’, this Gospel, is of more value than any other knowledge, wisdom or wealth. This message can literally save your soul.

1st Importance

Christ once said ‘what good is it if a man gains the whole world yet loses his soul?’ All of Einstein’s wisdom, the philosophy of Socrates, Oppenheimer’s atomic power; they stand for nothing in comparison to this simple and yet  ‘foolish’ message.  As Paul also wrote “A stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles,  but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God”.

May the Gospel of Christ be your first importance.