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Wednesday, March 2, 2016

The Trouble with Knowledge

Last month I changed my Bible reading plan.  For the past several years I have been using the daily readings from the Book of Common Prayer.  I switched to the M’Chenye reading plan.  Two weeks ago that took me to 1 Corinthians 8.
The Trouble with Knowledge
The last part of verse 1 you have probably heard, “…knowledge makes arrogant (many versions render this “puffs up”) but love edifies.”  You have probably also experienced this.  All of us have been around someone who has a little bit of knowledge and builds his self-esteem on that bit.

The second verse is in contrast to the one who is “puffed up” about their “knowledge,” “…If anyone supposes that he knows anything he has not yet know as he ought to know…”  That one is pretty clear.

This is in the part of the book where Paul is dealing with meat sacrificed to idols.  While that is part of his instruction for that issue, this seems to have also a broader application.

We learn in 1 Corinthians 12:7 that the gifts of the Spirit are given for the common good.  We are not given gifts or knowledge for our own benefit.  No, gifts and knowledge are for the benefit and edification of the Body.  Paul addresses this earlier in the book, 1 Corinthians 4:7, all we have, gifts and knowledge is the gift of God.  It is His grace.  As Paul states in Ephesians 2:8 – 10 that excludes boasting.

So rather than being impressed with ourselves, it seems a better course of action to be good stewards of what God has given us and use our gifts and knowledge to build up those around us in their walk with Christ…

…oh, they are supposed to be doing that for us as well.

1 comment:

  1. Something that helps me in this (in addition to regular, vigorous interaction in the Word, is to associate regularly with men and women who are more gifted, more experienced, in short more godly than I am, in my local assembly, in chosen associations, etc.

    At least it reminds me of how short I fall short of this grace of humility and stimulates me to pray, to recognize the problems in my own life and strive to "work out my salvation" in this way.