Sunday, May 21, 2023
“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV).
Can today’s Scripture deliver someone from absolute stupidity before he or she literally perishes in it? (Yes!)
Indeed, children are easily deceived, believing whatever they read or hear. They have practically no life experience to use as a basis for gauging whether something is right (true) or wrong (false), plausible (possible) or implausible (doubtful). On the other hand, it requires much more effort to convince adults because they, over the course of several years, have acquired a large body of information to which they appeal when evaluating anything new. Adults are certainly not immune to being led astray—many have been and still are deceived—but it is more challenging to influence them than children.
Similarly, a novice in the Bible is most susceptible to error, but rarely is this risk fully appreciated because every Bible user assumes they are exempt from trickery. For example, all church members attend services in their respective groups because they believe their organization is correct. Their denominational hierarchy, boasting “scholarly” graduates from prestigious seminaries and famous Bible colleges, has caused them to believe their education guards them from all mistakes. However, what has been overlooked is the fact the Bible is usually never given preeminence in most “ministry” training. They will quote and read Bible verses occasionally, but their instruction also involves studying world religions, philosophy, church history, statements of faith (belief systems), writings of ecclesiastical leaders (such as the “church fathers”), and so on. Everything is studied with equal attention, since the Bible is seen as “just one of many guides to spirituality.”
If the Scriptures are used at all, they are interpreted in light of everything else already reviewed—foreign definitions are thus carried into the Bible, controversial verses are reworded, vexing passages are dismissed as figurative instead of literal, and so on. That is, the Scriptures are forced to conform to non-Biblical views. Eventually, possession of any Bible at all becomes a curse instead of a blessing. Yet, if we consistently apply today’s Scripture, we become spiritual adults and thus shielded from the blunders that continually incapacitate the professing church….