Wednesday, November 07, 2007

knowledge takes a hit

Why is it that people can be so hard on knowledge? Of course knowing intellectually by itself is not enough; that knowledge must translate into life.

God's word says that his people can be destroyed because of their lack of knowledge. And that the only way we know as we ought to know is through love, loving God with our being and doing, and loving our neighbor as ourselves. And as we obey in that way, in the way of Jesus, we come to really begin to know. Of course the fear of the Lord is called the beginning of knowledge (and wisdom).

I've been called a mind person (as opposed to Spirit people), or dismissed as just someone who crammed their head full of knowledge. Some truth in all that, since my gift is along the line of teaching and I can't get enough of the kind of books that are along my interests (though I do need more discipline at sticking to reading at times).

I'm not convinced that we as God's people know everything we need to know and that our task now is just to do it, or have the wisdom to apply it. I think while there is some truth in that, I'd rather settle with the thought that we have enough knowledge by faith to take the next step. But as apprentices to God in Christ, we have plenty to learn where the rubber meets the road in our lives. And that's what the Story of God is all about, in which we're to find our own story and part.

Let's not disparage knowledge. But rather, let's seek to know all the counsel and will of God in a way that meets us where we live, that takes us in the way of Jesus.


Allan R. Bevere said...


A great post-- a hearty "Amen!"

I do not like these neat distinctions we make. We divide up personhood like we are carving meat.

We need a more Hebraic appraoch to humanity that sees the individual fundamentally as unified.

Thanks again!

Ted M. Gossard said...

Yes, exactly what I was thinking earlier today, along that line anyhow.

God appeals to our whole person, and one fundamental aspect of changing us hoistically is the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2). But that translates into our entire life, all that we are.


Anonymous said...

hi ted,
i am glad you posted tonight, since i will be flying tomorrow.

i am one that felt less than smart growing up because my gifts were not the kind of intelligence in the world of knowledge as it is. i am a thinker, however, i am not good at certain subjects or memorization. i tend to see that we all have our strong points and weak points. everyone has different gifts. i was often thought less of because my gifts did not fit the standards. but, there were a few people that saw my potential. and i think that this is important. God knows everyone's potential and personality and how it can be used. and i think that God does renew our minds and our whole being is being renewed. and i agree that it does translate into our whole lives.
so anyway, i know how it is when people are hard on one type of knowledge over another. the only thing i say, is that knowledge is one good thing and must be balanced with other good things. so...i agree with you. i really do not want to disparge anything, even though i do, i would like to catch myself and not do it. because i know that many times it is not necessary for doing the will of God. and may even go against it. if we were all the same, how could we learn from one another? all brought together in the Love of God. plus, i think of you as a Spirit walk in the Spirit.

Ted M. Gossard said...

I really agree with all you say here. I'm dumb as an ox in my mind in some ways, but others are gifted in those ways and so we all end up complementing each other.

I really appreciate and enjoy your gift. You are a good thinker, and you have a flare for creativity which is a blessing. We're all special in God and in Christ.

Blessings on you and yours on your trip.

Oloryn said...

I've long taken I Cor 8:1b as "Knowledge puffs up, but love takes that same knowledge and uses it to build up". The contrast isn't between knowledge and love, but between what knowledge does on its own, without love, and what love does with knowledge. It's not biblical to not seek knowledge, but it is biblical to make sure you go beyond merely accumulating knowledge.

Or as C. S. Lewis put it, "It's not 'be good, little maid, and let those think who can' but 'be good, little maid, and remember that includes thinking as well as you can'".

L.L. Barkat said...

I suppose knowledge gets a bad rap based on the Eden debacle. They betrayed God for knowledge. I have often thought the problem was not the knowledge, per se, but the knowledge outside of relationship. Indeed, many sins could be framed this way, in that we take, we "come to know" without love or commitment to the future.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Amen, and good way of putting it. And thanks for that from C.S. Lewis. Helpful.

Ted M. Gossard said...

I haven't seen it put this way precisely. Relationship in all things has been starting to come home to me, though I'm not sure I'm at home with it as much as need be yet.