A New Year’s Resolution Worth Keeping

By Jon Walker

New Years ResolutionsFor I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 1 Corinthians 2:2 (NIV)

How are you doing with your New Year’s resolutions? You remember that list you made with two scoops of optimistic enthusiasm, sprinkled with unrealistic expectations, and topped with the cherry of knowing the list isn’t serious anyway.

One of my friends started making New Year’s resolutions like:

  • I won’t lose ten pounds this year.
  • I commit to watching the Super Bowl this year.
  • I will listen to my iPod at least four days a week.

But there is one guy who I suspect played for keeps when he made New Year’s resolutions. You know, the zealot who could never do anything halfway, the let’s-get-real-about-our-faith apostle, Saul-Paul.

My thought is Paul only had one resolution on his New Year’s list: “This year I resolve to know nothing but Christ and him crucified” (1 Corinthians 2:2).

Paul’s message is radically simple: Salvation is in Christ alone. What does this mean?

  • It’s not Christ plus your good behavior.
  • It’s not Christ plus the years you taught a Bible study.
  • It’s not Christ plus your tithe.
  • It’s not Christ plus the church you attend.
  • It’s not Christ plus the number of verses you memorize.
  • It’s not Christ plus your title in the church.
  • It’s not Christ plus wisdom from the latest Christian seminar.
  • It’s not Christ plus a desert fast (or even a dessert fast!).
  • It’s not Christ plus a good driving record.
  • It’s not Christ plus well-behaved children.
  • It’s not Christ plus the size of your church..
  • It’s not Christ plus the right staff.It’s not Christ plus the latest technology.

It’s simply Christ. Christ plus nothing.

That’s Paul’s message, a message that is as right throughout the coming year as it will be in 2999. May your new resolution for the year be nothing but Christ and him crucified.

Jon Walker

Jon Walker is author of the small group study In Visible Fellowship: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer's Classic Work ‘Life Together’ and managing editor of Rick Warren’s Daily Devotionals. © 2012 Jon Walker. Used by permission.