My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: -Hosea 4:6a
You may know nothing of the "Know-Nothing" movement. It was blessedly short-lived and militated basically against German and Irish Roman Catholic immigrants. One sermon by a Know-Nothing minister described the pope as "an enemy of the railroads(!)," among other things. Need I say more?
There is, unfortunately, a new Know-Nothingism abroad in the land which asserts that theology is the province of ivory tower intellectuals and has nothing to do with the average every-day Christian.
I have linked to a display of charts showing the results of a survey among adult Americans concerning the content of the Christian faith:
The level of ignorance displayed in this survey is perhaps not surprising but certainly saddening; and alarming when you wonder just how effective might be the Gospel witness of someone so lacking in Gospel knowledge and understanding.
In is instructive to read the whole of the 4th chapter of Hosea, which starts with a blanket condemnation of God's people and a listing of sins which might sound all too familiar in the context of our culture.
After the warning of destruction in verse six, Hosea proceeds to condemn the faithlessness of the nation's teachers and leaders.
We are responsible, we believers in Christ, before God, to embrace Him fully, with all that we are and have. To desire him, to long to know him.
In Acts 17:11, the Bereans are commended for their examination of Scripture for their guidance and inspiration. Even Paul, that man of God, was held accountable and his preaching examined in the light of God's Word.
How much more so are we to examine our Bibles to see if what we are hearing from our preachers and teachers is indeed in line with God's revelation of Himself and the nature of the faith we have been given?
To know nothing of my faith is inexcusable. To follow blindly after a blind guide is folly.
There have been many great teachers in the God-directed history of His Church. We are thankful for them and by the Spirit's enlightening power, we prayerfully examine their teachings in light of Scripture. We examine ourselves and those who would lead us in that same light.
To the teaching and to the testimony! If they will not speak according to this word, it is because they have no dawn. -Isaiah 8:20
Amen. Let it be so.