1 Corinthians 1:18 (NIV)
18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

The principle duty Paul did among the people was to preach the message of the cross. It is the good news of the saving grace of God that came through Jesus Christ.

[Historian Garret Fagan summarizes how the Romans�the culture encountered by the early church�viewed the values of strength and weakness:

Ideas of universal human dignity were almost all but nonexistent and large swathes of the population were seen as � inherently worthless. Weak members of society were objects not of compassion but of derision. More than most, Romans lionized strength over weakness, victory over defeat, dominion over obedience. Losers paid a harsh price and got what they deserved, and [resisters] were to be ruthlessly handled � Roman politics became a ruthless game of total winners and abject losers � The drive to dominate and not be forced to bow before a rival was paramount. [Garrett G. Fagan, The Lure of the Arena (Cambridge University Press, 2011), pp. 33-34]]

The Romans were ruthlessly civilized. They dominated others to form a culture. One of their severest punishments was the cross where people died a merciless death. So to those of the time it would have seemed foolish that a person dying on a cross could be a savior to the world; for obviously that person was weak.

However, Jesus Christ was strong in His determination to die for us. He wrestled over the thought of death and bearing the sins of the world and yet He did. He died for us so that we could be free from sin. It may sound like foolishness to some, but for those who believe in Christ it is God�s power of saving grace.