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Like most things related to the bible and theology you will find many different opinions on the use of paradox in the Bible and the teachings of Jesus. A simple search on Google using the words “paradox” and “scripture” will turn up some in depth and passionate discussions.

Here are a few “rhetorical” paradoxes in the New Testament to think about:

To really live, we must die. “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me” (Galatians 2:20).

To save one’s life, he/she must lose it. “Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it” (Luke 17:33).

To be wise, we must become fools. “If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise” (I Corinthians 3:18).

To reign, we must serve. “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things” (Matthew 25:21).

To be exalted, we must become humble. “And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted” (Matthew 23:12).

To be first, we must be last. “So the last shall be first, and the first last” (Matthew 20:16).

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