Not Many Noble




“For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:”

I Corinthians 1:26



  1. This sermon follows one earlier today, “Before the World Began,” and describes those God chose.
  2. As we come to Communion, grasp the glorious grace of God in saving sinners, and ugly ones at that!
  3. By seeing ugly sinners among God’s elect, we can better glorify His grace and know ourselves elect!
  4. Let us be humbled by His choice, give Him all the glory, and be comforted that He loved even us.
  5. Throw up the shield of faith – Jesus Christ loves losers – to quench any fiery darts of the wicked!

THE TEXT (I Cor 1:26-31)

  1. We must understand God’s calling, His appointment to eternal life (II Tim 1:9; II Pet 1:10).
    1. While there may be a call of God that refers to regeneration, usually it refers to election.
    2. Observe that the context compares “call” (1:24-26) and “chosen” (1:27-28) as the same.
    3. Remember, it is those ordained to eternal life who believe the gospel gladly (Acts 13:48).
    4. Your calling is your vocation or appointment or ordination – God called Paul (Rom 1:1; I Cor 1:1), which was also ordaining him (I Tim 2:7) and appointing him (II Tim 1:11).
    5. God has not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by Jesus Christ (I Thes 5:9).
  2. The election of God is visible in the true churches of Jesus Christ by the saints assembled.
    1. God has not chosen many – it does not say any – wise, mighty, or noble after the flesh.
    2. However, there are a few in church history like Joseph of Arimathaea and Saul of Tarsus.
    3. God intentionally chose many foolish, weak, base, despised, and those who are nothing.
  3. In Jesus Christ we have all spiritual blessings that make us more than fit for heaven (1:30)!
    1. He is our Wisdom, and there is absolutely no comparison with His and that of the world!
    2. In Him we are more than mighty – we are sons of God and brothers of the King of kings!
    3. In Him we are more than noble – we are holy saints of the infinitely holy God of gods!
    4. In Him we are definitely something – for we have been redeemed with a great price!
    5. But notice how you obtained all these things in Christ; God chose you in Him, which is why it is worded, “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus” (Eph 1:4).


  1. God has chosen the poor of this world rich in faith and heirs of His kingdom (James 2:1-5).
    1. Jesus Christ is not a respecter of persons, as human measurements mean nothing at all.
    2. He has by divine sovereignty chosen to give the gift of faith to the poor.
  2. God hides His gospel from the wise and prudent to reveal it to babes instead (Matt 11:25-30).
    1. The wise ones, the pretty people, and the ones who don’t make mistakes are rejected.
    2. The ones He invites to come to Him are those laboring under heavy burdens – losers!
    3. A loser can find peace for his soul, for the Savior is lowly and meek in character as well!
    4. His demands are not difficult or heavy, when we come to Him fully with believing hearts.
  3. Jesus fulfilled a prophecy of Himself by comforting and preaching to losers (Luke 4:16-22).
    1. He graciously read Isaiah 61:1-2 and testified that they were witnessing its fulfillment.
    2. Are the poor, brokenhearted, captive, blind, and bruised winners or losers? Glory!
  4. Jesus aroused the contempt of “righteous people” for His interest in sinners (Luke 5:27-32).
    1. He attended a great feast of publicans and sinners, but the winners scorned the losers.
    2. Jesus rebuked them sharply by teaching that a Physician cares for the sick, not the whole.
    3. Jesus rebuked them sharply by teaching that He had come for sinners, not the righteous.
  5. Jesus values one repenting sinner higher than ninety-nine righteous men (Luke 15:7,10).
    1. Can we from these parables of a lost sheep and a lost coin continue our word to losers?
    2. Ah, sinner, wretched sinner, heaven’s angels are waiting to celebrate your repentance!
    3. And those “righteous” here are only the pompous, self-righteous pretty people of religion.
  6. Jesus taught that despised publicans are justified over respected Pharisees (Luke 18:9-14).
  7. Jesus saved Rahab and family from the city of Jericho, which was doomed (Joshua 6:25).
    1. Rahab was a Canaanite, those people whom the Lord had purposed to utterly destroy.
    2. Rahab was a harlot, or a prostitute; she was a strange woman; she was an adulteress.
    3. How was she sought and saved? The spies chose a harlot for cover, and they chose her.
    4. She is the great-great-grandmother of David and a mother of the Lord Jesus (Matt 1:5).
    5. 5. She is listed between Joshua and Gideon and compared to Abram (Heb 11:31; Jas 2:25)
  8. Jesus loved David, though he sinned heinously and had a horrible family (II Samuel 23:1-7).
    1. Consider that this man had to admit on his deathbed that his family was a big failure.
    2. Amnon conspired to rape his own sister and rejected her; then Absalom killed him.
    3. Absalom conspired, committed treason, raised a revolt, and took David’s concubines.
    4. Adonijah committed treason and sedition, raised a rebellion, and tried to steal Abishag.
    5. Solomon obsessively pursued polygamy to confusion and the evil worship of Molech.
    6. Rehoboam, his grandson, was such a fool that he lost ten of the twelve tribes forever.
    7. What if the LORD had not sent Nathan the prophet to David to graciously recover him?
  9. Jesus loved loser women, so He chose a few for His own physical genealogy (Matt 1:1-17).
    1. Tamar, Judah’s daughter-in-law, played the prostitute to have Judah’s son (Genesis 38).
    2. Rahab, the prostitute from the city of Jericho, was the mother of Boaz (Matthew 1:5).
    3. Ruth, a Moabitess, married Rahab’s Boaz and was mother to Obed (Ruth 4:17-22).
    4. Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah the Hittite, was the mother of Solomon (II Samuel 11).
  10. Jesus saved a fearful woman with an issue of blood that only got worse (Mark 5:24-34).
    1. She had this problem 12 years, spent all her money on physicians, and yet got worse!
    2. She was fearful to approach Jesus openly, but He saved her fully and openly.
  11. Jesus responded quickly to the thief on the cross with a glorious blessing (Luke 23:39-43).
    1. This man was a thief and a criminal, who was worthy of capital punishment – a loser!
    2. He had been railing on the Lord Jesus earlier on the cross, but his mind was changed.
    3. His prayer of repentance was quite simple, but Jesus didn’t ask for elaboration at all.
    4. He had nothing to offer, no life of holiness to live, no service in the church to give.
    5. But the Lord Jesus comforted this man with the most precious blessing we could receive.
  12. Jesus sent His angels to gather a beggar, who was the world’s sorriest loser (Luke 16:19-31).
    1. Here we see the life of the rich and famous contrasted to the most despicable loser ever.
    2. Surely Lazarus had opportunities in life; why didn’t he do a little something with his life?
    3. This cripple was full of sores, laid in the street, licked by the dogs, and died of starvation.
    4. But the swift chariot of God swung low and picked up Lazarus for the comfort of heaven.
    5. And the rich man, who fared sumptuously every day, woke up from his “heaven” in hell!
  13. Jesus loved a woman named Mary Magdalene, from whom He cast seven devils (Mark 16:9).
    1. This woman sounds like a loser, wouldn’t you say? She was possessed by seven devils.
    2. When Jesus rose from the dead, He came tenderly seeking her first of all (John 20:1-18).
  14. Jesus ignored thousands to pick Zacchaeus out of a crowd and go to his house (Luk 19:1-10).
    1. The Jews despised this runt; he had turned traitor and was a rich tax collector – a loser!
    2. He was so important that he had to climb a sycamore tree even to see Jesus pass that way.
    3. In front of the whole crowd, Jesus identifies him by name and chooses to go to his house!
    4. Jesus accepts his repentance on the spot and confesses him as one of His own. Glory!
  15. Jesus chose sinful fishermen to be His apostles and the church’s foundation (Matt 4:18-22).
    1. Educationally they were losers, for the best of them could not speak well (Acts 4:13).
    2. Spiritually they understood little, slept while He prayed, and forsook Him at death.
  16. Jesus chose a publican and clerk to be an apostle, Matthew, the son of Alphaeus (Matt 9:9).
    1. The Jews despised publicans for betraying them, collecting for Rome, and often stealing.
    2. Notice who was seeking whom in this search for another apostle. Jesus sought Matthew.
  17. Jesus discouraged a Canaanite woman before finally delivering her daughter (Matt 15:21-28).
    1. The woman was a loser – a cursed Canaanite and her daughter was possessed by a devil.
    2. Read the account and see that Jesus or His disciples clearly discouraged her four times!
  18. Jesus sought and saved a devil-possessed and totally insane man of Gedara (Mark 5:1-20).
    1. This loser lived nude in the cemetery. He could not be bound; he could not be tamed.
    2. He was always in the cemetery or mountains, crying, and cutting himself with stones.
    3. Jesus and all the apostles crossed the sea for what purpose? For one horrible loser! Glory!
  19. Jesus spoke life into the heart of a hardened and hopeless jailor in Philippi (Acts 16:19-40).
    1. He was so hardened he locked Paul and Silas, naked and bleeding, into the inner prison.
    2. He was so hopeless, when the earthquake opened doors, that he tried to commit suicide.
  20. Jesus twice sought out and saved a man blind from birth who was rejected by others (John 9).
    1. The Pharisees rejected this man as an ignorant sinner and cast him out of the synagogue.
    2. But Jesus had found him to give him his sight, and He found him again to grant him faith.
  21. Jesus found a single leper and cured him of his leprosy in a kind, personal way (Matt 8:1-4).
    1. In the midst of great multitudes, Jesus had compassion on a single, contagious leper.
    2. He did not merely heal him, but touched him before many witnesses, while healing him.
  22. Jesus saved many losers at Corinth, who brought much baggage with them (I Cor 6:9-11).
    1. Consider. This church had wild fornicators, dumb idolaters, cross dressers, and faggots.
    2. But they were washed, sanctified, and justified in the name of the Lord Jesus! Glory!
  23. Jesus forgave a sinful woman and defended her against Simon the Pharisee (Luke 7:36-50).
    1. Simon despised Jesus for not rejecting this sinful loser woman, who was touching Him.
    2. Jesus contrasted her great love for Him to Simon’s little love by her need for forgiveness.
    3. He comforted the woman and sent her on her way with full forgiveness and peace.
  24. Jesus sought out the Samaritan woman with 5+ husbands, living in fornication (John 4:4-42).
    1. She was a Samaritan, despised by the Jews, which surprised her and the disciples (9,27).
    2. She was a fornicator, having had five different men and now living with the sixth (18).
    3. Though hungry and presented with food, Jesus was consumed with the Samaritans (35).
    4. When invited by them, Jesus stayed with the Samaritans of that place for two days (40).
  25. Jesus sent Philip to obscure parts of the desert for a black, eunuch Gentile (Acts 8:26-40).
    1. Read that Philip was directed from Samaria to the desert and back to Azotus for one man.
    2. This man was an Ethiopian, but Jesus loves “coloreds” (Num 12:1; Jer 13:23; Acts 13:1)!
    3. This man was a eunuch, but Jesus loves “dry trees” (Lev 21:17-21; Deut 23:1; Is 56:3-5).
    4. This man was a Gentile, but Jesus accelerated His progression for him (Acts 1:8; 11:19).
    5. The man didn’t understand Isaiah 53, a basic prophecy of the Messiah’s sacrifice (31).


  1. He is the Potter; we are the clay; He is righteous; we are dependent; therefore we must come before Him in total humility that our salvation is entirely of Him (Dan 4:35; Rom 9:14-24).
  2. He has intentionally bypassed the rich and famous of this world to shut the mouths of all men to have all the glory Himself, and we should cheerfully give Him all that glory.
  3. No matter how poorly you may think of yourself, you should take great comfort that the elect of God are made up of a great company of others, many of whom are just like you.
    1. Do not let Satan tempt you to think that God could not or would not elect one like you!
    2. Do not let Satan tempt you to think that Jesus could not or would not die for one like you!
    3. Do not let Satan tempt you to think that God will not accept you fully this very minute!


  1. How do I know God elected me and Christ died for me? Is the gospel the power and wisdom of God?
  2. Repent of your sins! Believe on Jesus Christ! Purpose to live for Him! He promised you eternal life!

For Further Study:

  1. Sermon Outline: “Jesus Loves Losers,” is very similar to this sermon in its lesson and examples.
  2. Sermon Outline: “Jesus Came for Sinners,” exposits I Timothy 1:15 and exhorts sinners to flee to Christ.
  3. Sermon Outline: “I Corinthians 1:1-18,” details every verse of this chapter excluding the ones studied above.
  4. Sermon Outline:“I Corinthians 1:17-31,” details every verse of this chapter including ones studied above.
  5. Sermon Outline: “The Prodigal Son,” shows the danger of self-righteousness and the glory of God’s grace.