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Article: Head and Heart Knowledge

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Nick P.

What has happened to our Christian nation today? We seem to have come from an era where "The Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessolonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true." to an era where knowledge is deemed to be the antithesis of Christianity. The word Noble is the same one in the Greek used in Luke 19:12 when Luke describes a nobleman who's a ruler of some sort. This is most certainly a compliment.

I will first start off with a brief look at where knowledge is mentioned in the Scriptures in the Old and New testaments.

Exodus 31:3 And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship,

Exodus 35:31 And he hath filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship;

1 Samuel 2:3 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let [not] arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD [is] a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.

2 Chron. 1:10-12 Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, [that is so] great? And God said to Solomon, Because this was in thine heart, and thou hast not asked riches, wealth, or honour, nor the life of thine enemies, neither yet hast asked long life; but hast asked wisdom and knowledge for thyself, that thou mayest judge my people, over whom I have made thee king: Wisdom and knowledge [is] granted unto thee; and I will give thee riches, and wealth, and honour, such as none of the kings have had that [have been] before thee, neither shall there any after thee have the like.

2 Chron. 30:22 And Hezekiah spake comfortably unto all the Levites that taught the good knowledge of the LORD: and they did eat throughout the feast seven days, offering peace offerings, and making confession to the LORD God of their fathers.

Nehemiah 10:28-And the rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the porters, the singers, the Nethinims, and all they that had separated themselves from the people of the lands unto the law of God, their wives, their sons, and their daughters, every one having knowledge, and having understanding;

Psalm 14:4 Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge? who eat up my people [as] they eat bread, and call not upon the LORD.

Psalm 19:2 Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge.

Psalm 94:10 He that chastiseth the heathen, shall not he correct? he that teacheth man knowledge, [shall not he know]?

Psalm 119:66 Teach me good judgment and knowledge: for I have believed thy commandments.

Proverbs 1:4 To give subtilty to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion.

Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the LORD [is] the beginning of knowledge: [but] fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Proverbs 1:22 How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?

Proverbs 1:29 For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD:

Proverbs 2:3 Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, [and] liftest up thy voice for understanding;

Proverbs 2:5-6 Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth [cometh] knowledge and understanding.

Proverbs. 2:10 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;

Proverbs 5:2 That thou mayest regard discretion, and [that] thy lips may keep knowledge.

Proverbs 8:9-10 They [are] all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge. Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold.

Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the LORD [is] the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy [is] understanding.

Proverbs 10:14 Wise [men] lay up knowledge: but the mouth of the foolish [is] near destruction.

Proverbs 11:9 An hypocrite with [his] mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.

Proverbs 12:1 Whoso loveth instruction loveth knowledge: but he that hateth reproof [is] brutish.

Proverbs 12:23 A prudent man concealeth knowledge: but the heart of fools proclaimeth foolishness.

Proverbs 13:16 Every prudent [man] dealeth with knowledge: but a fool layeth open [his] folly.

Proverbs 14:6-7 A scorner seeketh wisdom, and [findeth it] not: but knowledge [is] easy unto him that understandeth. Go from the presence of a foolish man, when thou perceivest not [in him] the lips of knowledge.

Proverbs 14:18 The simple inherit folly: but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.

Proverbs 15:2 The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.

Proverbs 15:7 The lips of the wise disperse knowledge: but the heart of the foolish [doeth] not so.

Proverbs 15:14 The heart of him that hath understanding seeketh knowledge: but the mouth of fools feedeth on foolishness.

Proverbs 17:27 He that hath knowledge spareth his words: [and] a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit.

Proverbs 18:15 The heart of the prudent getteth knowledge; and the ear of the wise seeketh knowledge.

Proverbs 19:2 Also, [that] the soul [be] without knowledge, [it is] not good; and he that hasteth with [his] feet sinneth.

Proverbs 19:25 Smite a scorner, and the simple will beware: and reprove one that hath understanding, [and] he will understand knowledge.

Proverbs 19:27 Cease, my son, to hear the instruction [that causeth] to err from the words of knowledge.

Proverbs 20:15 There is gold, and a multitude of rubies: but the lips of knowledge [are] a precious jewel.

Proverbs 21:11 When the scorner is punished, the simple is made wise: and when the wise is instructed, he receiveth knowledge.

Proverbs 22:12 The eyes of the LORD preserve knowledge, and he overthroweth the words of the transgressor.

Proverbs 22:17 Bow down thine ear, and hear the words of the wise, and apply thine heart unto my knowledge.

Proverbs 22:20 Have not I written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge,

Proverbs 23:12 Apply thine heart unto instruction, and thine ears to the words of knowledge.

Proverbs 24:4-5 And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches. A wise man [is] strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength.

Proverbs 24:14 So [shall] the knowledge of wisdom [be] unto thy soul: when thou hast found [it], then there shall be a reward, and thy expectation shall not be cut off.
Proverbs 28:2 For the transgression of a land many [are] the princes thereof: but by a man of understanding [and] knowledge the state [thereof] shall be prolonged.

Isaiah 5:13 (NOTE THIS ONE!) Therefore my people are gone into captivity, because [they have] no knowledge: and their honourable men [are] famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst.

Isaiah 11:12 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;

Isaiah 32:4 The heart also of the rash shall understand knowledge, and the tongue of the stammerers shall be ready to speak plainly.

Isaiah 33:6 And wisdom and knowledge shall be the stability of thy times, [and] strength of salvation: the fear of the LORD [is] his treasure

Isaiah 45:20 Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye [that are] escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god [that] cannot save.

Isaiah 53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, [and] shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
Jeremiah 3:15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.

Daniel 1:4 (NOTE THIS ONE!) Children in whom [was] no blemish, but well favoured, and skilful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science, and such as [had] ability in them to stand in the king's palace, and whom they might teach the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans.

Daniel 1:17 As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.

Daniel 5:12 Forasmuch as an excellent spirit, and knowledge, and understanding, interpreting of dreams, and shewing of hard sentences, and dissolving of doubts, were found in the same Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar: now let Daniel be called, and he will shew the interpretation.

Hosea 4:6 (NOTE THIS ONE!) My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

Hosea 6:6 For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.

Malachi 2:7 For the priest's lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he [is] the messenger of the LORD of hosts.

Luke 1:77 To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins,

Luke 11:52 Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered.

Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in [their] knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

Romans 2:20 An instructor of the foolish, a teacher of babes, which hast the form of knowledge and of the truth in the law.

Romans 10:2 (NOTE THIS ONE!) For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.

1 Cor. 12:8 For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;

2 Cor. 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to [give] the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

2 Cor. 6:6 By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned,

2 Cor. 8:7 Therefore, as ye abound in every [thing, in] faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and [in] all diligence, and [in] your love to us, [see] that ye abound in this grace also.

Ephesians 1:17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:

Philippians 1:9 And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and [in] all judgment;

Colossians 2:3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

1 Timothy 2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

James 3:13 Who [is] a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.

2 Peter 1:5-6 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;

2 Peter 3:18 But grow in grace, and [in] the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him [be] glory both now and for ever. Amen.

This selection of Scriptures is by no means exhaustive. There are many others. The belief that knowledge is opposed to God is certainly not based in Scripture then. I also note most of the verses of knowledge are in Proverbs which starts out emphasizing the fear of God.

In fact, throughout history, Christians have been responsible for the spreading of knowledge. Many great institutes of higher learning in America though now highly atheistic started with a Christian root. These include even schools like Harvard. A look at early colleges can be surprising. The Puritans themselves insisted their children be taught knowledge.

Kierkegaard was a Philosopher who was opposed to knowledge. He would not believe in apologetics at all. Although he certainly believed the biblical testimony, he didn't feel it needed defending. He said we must take a blind leap of faith. Today, he is one of the most respected philosophers out there, not so much by Christians but by atheists and skeptics.

His position is called Fideism and is not what the Scriptures teach. They freely allow us to search out all things to see if they are true as the Bereans did. In fact, the beginning of Luke shows that Luke did his homework and searched all things out before he wrote an account.

Ironically though, for one against head knowledge, he had to use head knowledge to reason out his belief in fideism. If one says, "I believe in only heart knowledge." they are using their head to come to that conclusion. It is unbelievable that the God of all reason and wisdom and knowledge and logic would not allow us to use them to understand him. Although we'll never fully comprehend God, we can begin to apprehend him.

Meanwhile, head knowledge without heart knowledge though is also useless. James told the people that it didn't matter that they believed there was one God. The demons did that too, and they trembled. The fallacy of knowledge is not having the knowledge but in not applying it. Ironically, one must feel that head knowledge is enough before they'd act on it so in turn, they too use heart knowledge.

We cannot approach this like some approach the Bible and Science. Many come and see the two directly opposed to each other. But the laws of Science are the ones God craeted so how could they be opposed to him? In the same way, God created the head and the heart and put them into one body. They are not made to oppose each other.

But what about 1 Corinthians 8? Doesn't the Bible say "Knowledge puffs up."

That is a valid question. I would say for one thing, Paul was repeating the argument of his opponents. He's prone to do that in 1 Cor. Some believe that can make sense of his statement in 1 Cor. 7:1 when he said "It is good for a man not to marry."  In 1 Cor. 6:12 he says "Everything is permissible for me" and then adds his own note in essence says, "Yes. But not everything is beneficial." The Gnostics were denying the reality of the physical body to indulge in all manner of sins.

The same situation comes up here. Some were using knowledge not for God but for their own righteousness. I believe some were saying, "We know that you ought not to eat meat offered to idols." and because they knew that and their brethren who obviously didn't ate, they considered themselves better than they were. The same situation can be paralleled to Romans 14.

Knowledge isn't the problem here but knowledge of self-righteousness. That we know better than others in areas of non-importance. I think now for instance mainly of the Harry Potter debates. You don't have to guess my point. I will tell you. I am neutral. I follow the recommendation in 1 Cor. 8 and will gladly discuss such a view. But I won't look down on one who thinks it's wrong so long as they don't look down on me. Let each man be fully convinced in his own mind. (Romans 14:5)

So what is with the fear of knowledge? I have some theories.

#1-The intellectuals destroy the church.

The beliefs seems to be again that science is the enemy. It isn't but the misapplication of Science. True science can reveal to us more the glory of God. When we see the intracacies of the universe, it makes us hold God in all the more awe. Intellectualism, properly used, can defend Christianity all the more.

#2-Emotion is better.

Not all people are emotional. Not all people are intellectual. I, for one, am more intellectual. I would prefer an apologetics seminar more than a counseling seminar. That is fine. Some would prefer counseling more than apologetics. God calls some people to apologetics. God calls some people to Counseling. We need people in both fields.

#3 Worship is of the heart.

That it is but it is also of the mind. The Lord told us to worship him with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. If we stop at just the first, we are cutting short our worship. I believe true worship is found with all four focused on God. Knowledge of him in your mind, love in your heart, the presence in your soul, and the strength of your body all together.

#4-The Bible doesn't need defending.

I've recently been looking at the key verse of apologists. 1 Peter 3:15 says to always be ready to give an answer for the hope that is within you. We are not so much defending Scripture and God as we are defending our hope and if our hope is based on those, then we support them. Our main defense is of our hope.


I also believe some people enjoy being caught in their safety bubble. It seems many churches are stuck on feelings. It is good to be happy that God saved you but you must grow beyond that point. A feeling cannot last forever nor is it supposed to. Anyone married can testify to this. Someday's you really love your spouse and some days you don't. It fluctuates. Even a dating couple can understand that. So it is with our relationship with Christ. The feelings will fluctuate but that won't really change our true love. If our status is dependant on our feelings, we are all in trouble.


Some have been opposed to looking into certain teachers. What's sad is that the teachers oppose that. If a teacher is afraid to have people look into him, then I don't want to follow that teacher. Christ called himself into account. He asked any of the people to convict him of sin. No one could. I highly oppose the teacher that is against his own practices being looked into.

Thus, I would suggest that our Chrstians get back to knowledge. So many false doctrines and cults could be stopped by knowing knowledge. If all we have is feelings, we are no better than the Mormons and the Jehovah's Witnesses or even Buddhists and Hindus who would say they know what they believe is true because they feel it. Christians have both feeling and knowledge to back them. We should not forsake either.

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

God bless


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