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Nick P.

What is it when a Christian hears the word knowledge? Why does knowledge scare so many Christians? Is knowledge the root of all evil? Is knowledge what Adam and Eve got punished for? Is it wrong to have faith and knowledge?

In many Christian circles it seems to be. The Christian who has trained himself up on many subjects is seen to not have a relationship with God. I would first ask, what would make one have so much passion but a relationship with God? Speaking as such a person who has been told such many times, it is my relationship with God that drives me with a passion to understand how he works and his ways.

Let us start at the beginning. Isn't knowledge what killed Adam and Eve? Eating of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil? Knowledge according to the dictionary is pretty much the state of knowing. So let's analyze what happened at the beginning.

God tells Adam first off that he is to go forth and multiply. (he must have the knowledge to know how to multiply to do so and I can just imagine God telling Adam the "facts of life.") God also tells him what he can use for food. Thus he has knowledge of what he can use for food and probably with that how to go about getting it.

He is put in the garden and told to take care of it so he is given knowledge on how to tend the garden. He is told not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil so he KNOWS that he should not do that.

He is given animals so he is knowledgable of speaking since he names them and later speaks to the woman. Thus, if knowledge is a sin, Adam had sinned before he ever ate of the fruit.

But what led to the fall? Knowledge? No. Adam had the knowledge to know not to eat of the fruit. I would say ignorance. They had the knowledge but chose to act as if they did not have the knowledge. Ironically, Webster's calls ignorance a lack of knowledge. Overall, it was disobedience as a friend of mine has pointed out.

Imagine what a great knowledge Adam must have possessed before the fall. He would walk through the garden talking with God. Do you not think God shared the knowledge of who he was with him much like he most likely did with Enoch in Genesis 5?

So what is knowledge for? Because Christians are not to be ignorant. We are to give an answer for the hope that is within us. (1 Peter 3:15) This isn't calling every Christian to be a walking encyclopedia but it's calling them to at least have some knowledge of what they believe.

Nor at the same time should faith be totally knowledge. There must be an emotional part to it also which is faith. Augustine often said credo ut intelligum. I believe that I may understand. Knowledge is incomplete without the source of all knowledge.

Is it also wrong then to read something besides the Bible? Many Christians feel they should only read the Bible. Let me make something clear here. I am Sola Scriptura. I believe God's Word alone is the final grounds but I believe we are free to read many opinions and see how they compare to the final authority, the Bible.

Is there any justification for reading outside the Bible? YES! Paul himself was quite acquainted with philosophy and he reasoned with it in Acts 17. He used the terms of the Greek philosophers and if you are familiar with them, you can often see that many of the things he said hinted at them. In the letter to Titus, he showed that he was familiar with many poets as well.

If Paul saw fit to be educated in the knowledge of his day, shouldn't we? And should we also read other Christians works? Yes! Peter critiqued on Paul's writings and knew ahead of time enough to call them Scripture in 2 Peter 3. In fact, if you tell people not to trust in what man says, are you not a man (or woman if you have to finicky) telling them to not believe in a man and thus defeating yourself? For if they should not trust in man, why should they trust you when you tell them not to trust in man?

Christians. Know what you believe. Know why you believe. This is why doctrine is also important. Doctrine gives you firm grounds upon which to stand on many issues. Were we familiar with doctrine beliefs like the Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses would have been easily removed by now most likely. Sadly, they get many converts from Christians because Christians have chosen to be ignorant of what they believe thinking it is more spiritual to have "faith alone." when in fact, faith alone makes us no different from Hindus and Buddhists and dare I say it atheists.

So now is the time to study and fulfill the biblical command to "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." (2 Peter 3:18)

Comments? Questions? Thoughts? Suggestions? (Insults were due yesterday)


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