“Let no one deceive himself. If any one among you thinks that he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is folly with God. For it is written, ‘He catches the wise in their craftiness,’ and again, ‘The Lord knows that the thoughts of the wise are futile.’ So let no one boast of men. For all things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future, all are yours; and you are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.” (1 Cor 3: 18-23)
We belong to Christ, as do the Apostles and Fathers of the Church. Christ did not hand us over into the possession of any theologian or teacher, however holy or great his or her contribution and ministry to the rest of us may be. Hence all of us who choose to follow Christ, – also those of us not knowledgeable in “theology,” which is the articulation of our faith rather than the object of our faith, – all of us “belong” in and to the Body of Christ. Does this mean it’s “bad” to study theology and to theologize? No, of course not. But it is “folly with God,” if it makes one think “that he is wise in this age”; that he has God all figured out, as if we could “master” the knowledge and mind of God.
Let me be grateful this morning that I am given “all things” created by God, and by these things I can learn more about Him. I am also given many wonderful teachers and fathers, from whom I can also learn about Him, to the best of my ability. But regardless of how little or how much I might study theology, let me not “boast of men,” as if knowledge of their writings set me apart from the rest of “us,” who are all Christ’s. “Remembering our most holy, most pure, most blessed and glorious Lady, the Mother of God and ever-virgin Mary, together with all the saints, let us commend ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God.”