Monday, December 14, 2009

Knowledge is Not Wisdom {Part Two}

Click here to read Part One.

What is pride? Pride is a misconception of your self identity. Pride can go to two extremes. Arrogant pride is thinking more highly of yourself than you ought to think. Pity pride is thinking more lowly of yourself than you ought to think. Both draw the same attention of the attention seeker. Both are equally damaging pride. So how should we think of ourselves?

Romans 12:3
"For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you."

James 4:7
"Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."

Ephesians 5:8-11a
"For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light 9(for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) 10and find out what pleases the Lord. 11Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness..."

So humility and fear of the Lord is really just submitting yourself to God the Creator. It is not grovelling and saying "I'm not worthy." or "I'm just a screw up, no one can help poor me." That is pity pride. But it is also not thinking that you know better than God. That sounds like this..."Well this is 2009, God just seems a little outdated." or "God just doesn't understand my situation." or "God is for weaklings that can't think for themselves." That is arrogant pride and it is wrong. God created you, he loves you and wants the best for you. He created your mind and intellect as a blessing for you and for Him. Root your identity in Christ. Do not be any more or less.

Now if we follow our diagram above falsehood and lies is what follows a prideful heart. The devil as the patron non-saint of pride thought that he could be better than God. He did not want to honor his Creator. Adam and Eve did the same thing. They thought they could gain more "wisdom" from the created being of Satan instead of the Creator God.

Romans 1:25
"They exchanged the truth of God for a lie and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator."

What is the first thing that happens to Adam and Eve after ingesting this knowledge of the devil? Their eyes were opened to the falsehood and lies of the devil. They noticed their nakedness and were ashamed. See who the devil used both prides here. He enticed them with arrogant pride {you will be like God} and then after sinning are stricken with pity pride {ashamed of how God created them.} All to the devil's selfish delight. The devil never has and never will do anything beneficial for you. It will always be a lie that leads you away from God and who He created you to be.

Now fortunately for Adam and Eve they were in active relationship with God. So they were able to repent and God put His covering back over them. But if people do not repent with a broken and contrite heart the devils lies lead to deception and confusion. This is the all encompassing death of the spirit that the devil feeds off of. People loose their sense of identity. They are often shallow, angry, wounded people. On the other hand they can led somewhat productive lives. The spiritual is dead, but the physical has learned how to cope.

This is the way the devil has worked mass deception. There are millions of people that believe certain falsehoods as truth simply because of how many people believe them. They think that there is truth in numbers. How ridiculous is that? Remember your mom saying "would you jump off a cliff just because your friends did?" Same idea. The world thinks that just because so many people believe in a certain lie than that must mean it is true. Wrong!

Once again this is deception of the devil rooted in pride. These people think that there is no God, or if there is a God he is no good. People that worship knowledge over God or trust their own moral compass are arrogantly proud. They become their own god. This is what we call humanism. Pity pride leads to oppressive religion, self-hatred, self -destruction and altogether lost people. These people think that if their is a God He must not care about them.

Evolution is an interesting falsehood in the way that it works both prides. Evolution arrogantly assumes that we were not created by God (little lower than the angels mind you) and that we are no more than intelligent evolved apes. Now I would say that thinking I came from apes is thinking more lowly of myself than I ought to think. Wouldn't you? But this is the belief of millions of people just because "intelligent" people say so. But what of all the evidence they have found? Well it is my understanding that evidence for evolution has changed several times over the years. You need just as much faith to believe evolution as you do to believe in God! However the bible has never changed or been updated. God has never changed. Why? Because Truth is the same yesterday, today and forever. Look all information and knowledge that does not point to God and His truth and principles is falsehood. These "intelligent" people have used their minds and the knowledge they have gathered with a prideful heart. At the same time these "intelligent" people have given God a big middle finger. This path will always led to deep deception; meaning they can no longer see the truth.

Jude 10
"Yet these men speak abusively against whatever they do not understand; and what things they do understand by instinct, like unreasoning animals—these are the very things that destroy them."

Romans 1:28
2"Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done."

James 3:13-16
"Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. 14But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. 15Such "wisdom" does not come down from heaven but is earthly, un-spiritual, of the devil. 16For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice."

Are you starting to see the difference between knowledge and wisdom? Now let me clear about one thing. Just because someone does not have a relationship with God, doesn't mean that they are incapable of truth and wisdom. There are many who don't have a personal relationship with God but still honor Him. There have been many great minds throughout history that have discovered great things and at the same time have had no relationship with God. Some have even been strictly opposed to God. But God is truth and God is gracious. Therefore God will always honor truth and goodness even if it comes from someone against Him.

Science is something that should never be deemed un-spiritual. God is a God of science. He is the one that made it all in the first place. That is why we find so much order in the universe. So science should continue to advance. New discoveries can change people's lives. But they should also be things that point to the Creator not away from Him. Think of the even greater things science could discover if scientists submitted their cause to glorify God! But when truth is not backed with a relationship with God it leaves the door open for the devil. He is a master at manipulating the truth of God for his own purpose. Leading people away from God instead of to God.

So knowledge is not the problem. It is what we do with that knowledge in respect to God that makes all the difference. We can not turn knowledge into God. Worship God above all else and He will give you wisdom and understanding. We must also realize that we are never going to have all the answers. Many scientists hold tho the law of "naturalism". Naturalism being the system of thought holding that all phenomena can be explained in terms of natural causes and laws. Therefore it excludes exsistance of the supernatural. People...the supernatural is NEVER going to be explained by natural laws. That is why it is called the SUPERnatural. It is above and beyond the natural. So how can finite answers explain an infinite God? They can't. But God can give us understanding beyond the finite through His Spirit. That is why the Spirit is super-natural. He is not of this world.

Colossians 2:2-4
"...they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments."

So how do we make sure we are not led astray be the schemes of the devil? Live in the truth and principles of God. Read His word. Meditate and pray. Learn of the character of God and who He is. Put off the spirit of death and deception and live in God's fullness and life. This is a daily decision for some. You have to yield to the Spirit for this to happen. This is where all logic goes out the window and you step out in faith. Out of the natural and into the super-natural. I can tell you is so worth it.

Romans 8:5-8
"Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God."

1John 4:4-6
"You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood."

Seems too simple right. Seems unintelligent doesn't it? While we are on the subject...why do the people who follow God seem so simple? Some would even say stupid. Compare the desert dwelling Israelites to the advanced culture of the Egyptians. Compare the hidden"cult" of the early church to the powerful Roman Empire or Greek philosophers of the day. Even today, modern intellectual thinkers seem to be aghast at the ignorance of Christianity. So what gives?

Two things. After man sinned God saw the strategy of the enemy to use knowledge as a pitfall. So God made sure to keep His righteous people focused on Him instead of intellectual advancement. Really all of the "advanced" cultures of ancient times are a testament as to how knowledge is not the best foundation. Most all of those empires cease to exist today. So a simple identity in Christ seasoned with knowledge and wisdom has lasted though the ages and has never faded. It wasn't that God's people lacked the knowledge, they just focused on greater things of the Spirit. Remember it was Noah who built a gigantic ark that stayed a float for a year. It was Solomon who built the temple with the finest materials to exact specifications. Not to mention modern scientists such as Blaise Pascal, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, Robert Boyle and George Washington name a few.

Second, as we have seen intellectual minds tend to be exclusionary. Where as simplicity is open to all. Think of the birth of the early church. This new "religion" had to be understood by all types of people groups and languages. It had to accessible to the uneducated slave and poor as well as educated Romans and Greek philosophers. Messages had to be concise and easy to understand...there were no bibles yet. They had no official meeting places. They had to give quick sermons before they were caught and put in jail. The simplicity was necessary so that all people would have a chance to accept Christ. That is the beauty of the Holy Spirit. Anyone can accept the Spirit and have the same fullness of wisdom in Christ. Paul preached this to the Greek philosophers themselves on Mars Hill. Many of them put their intellect to a humble level and accepted Jesus. {Acts 17:16-34}

Perfect example that the message of Christ can be understood by a child or the highly intellectual mind. But first their must be a change of heart. Humility before the Creator by the created. Then all the riches of God's wisdom and understanding will give you life in His Spirit. So seek God's wisdom. Don't settle for shallow knowledge and deception. God wants you to use your brain but use it to His glory.

Click here from some cool scientific consistencies found in the bible.

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