Know That You Know That You Know

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A Little Background

Recently I was talking to a gentleman and I brought up the question "Who wrote the Gospel of John?" He immediately went on the defensive and began to quote so-called scholars, I asked for biblical evidence. He offered none. I tried to show him from the Scriptures alone that it is impossible for John to have written the book. The Word of God did not matter. He held tenaciously to his misguided beliefs. - not willing to examine any evidence that might contradict his preconceived ideas.

For years I believed that the Apostle John wrote the book that bares his name. I was taught this in church, in Bible college, and just about everywhere else in Christian circles. It was not until I did some independent research that I discovered otherwise. I let the Bible speak for itself, and my conclusion is not what I expected. The Biblical evidence is clear that someone other than John wrote the book.

You may also believe that the Apostle John wrote the Gospel that bares his name. That really is not the issue. The issue is, are you willing to examine the Bible for yourself? Are you willing to be challenged in your beliefs? And if need be, are you willing to change your beliefs?

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The Traditions of Men

Colossians 2:8 tells us, "Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men . . . ." I wonder if we have not fallen from time to time for the traditions of men. Even our Bible-based churches have given in to traditions of men. Have you? We are clearly told in this verse to be careful about accepting philosophies and man-made traditions as truth. You need to know that you know that you know. You need to know where you stand, what you believe and why, and then not move from your position.

Jesus said in John 8:32, "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Scripture is truth Jesus is truth. You have no need of anyone but Him. Let Him speak truth into your ears. Let him guide you. Yes, listen to the preacher. Pay attention to books you may read. Hear carefully what is being presented as truth on TV and radio. Then look at it through the lens of the Bible, and it differs, " . . .let God be true, but every man a liar. . . ."

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Traditions or Truth?

Examples of tradition versus truth are found in almost every church. I realize many of these traditions which are taken for truth may be innocent. But I do challenge you to consider where you stand on these thoughts. I do not demand or even ask that you agree with me. I only ask, are you following traditions as taught by men; whether they be pastors, priests or kings; whether they be a well known author or an established TV personality or are you following the truth of the one who will make you free. Consider the following - traditions or truth?

Back to our beginning example - who wrote the Gospel of John? I am convinced after weeks of study that John is not the author. Do not just read this and go on? I challenge you to dig for yourself. Find a single verse that points to the Apostle John as the author. I have yet to find one verse that gives the impression that John is the author, but I have found many that point to another. What do you find? I would like to know. Please share your results in the comment section below.

What about the Last Supper? How many attended? Just because Leonardo da Vinci painted a beautiful picture portraying Jesus and the 12 disciples, does that mean only 13 were present? We are taught this as truth, but try to find one verse that says only 13 were present. There were hundreds of disciples that followed Christ. I would appreciate it if you could find me scripture that supports the idea that the Last Supper was only attended by the 13.

How often have we heard that a chariot of fire took the prophet Elijah to Heaven. Is that really what II Kings 2:11 says - "And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven." The chariot of fire separated Elijah from Elisha - " . . .and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven."

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Does It Really Matter?

You may ask, "Does it really matter? These are small things and really do not make a difference in Bible truth. Who really cares who wrote the Book of John. It is what is written that is important, not the name of the book."

I respectfully disagree. It is important how we portray Scripture. In the case of the authorship of John, many claim that it was John who ran to the empty tomb with Peter. It was John who asked the Lord who was the betrayer at the Last Supper. It was John who was known to the High Priest and allowed entrance at the trial of Christ. You ask, "Is it important?" It most certainly is because if someone other than John did these things, then we have lied. We hold to these teachings as true, yet there is not a shred of scriptural evidence that John was involved in any of these incidents.

Have you ever followed any traditions rather than the truth?

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Why?

For years I believed that John wrote the Fourth Gospel. For years I believed that Elijah went to Heaven on a chariot of fire. For too long I believed there were only the 12 Apostles and Jesus present at the Last Supper. Why? Because I trusted the traditions of men rather than seeking for myself. But what about this question? Why do we defend the false beliefs we carry even when there is evidence to the contrary? Why do we run when a different idea is revealed rather than weigh the evidence? Why do we claim to believe the truth, but when confronted with something other than what was previously taught we hide in a corner?

My prayer is that you will investigate these and other Biblical teachings for what they are - the Word of God. Know that you know that you know. I Peter 3:15 gives us this instruction - "But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you . . . ."

When someone challenges your beliefs can you stand toe to toe and defend them Biblically? It is not about traditions taught by the church. It is not the philosophies of preachers that are passed off as Bible truth. What does the Bible actually say?

The Bigger Issues

The three examples we have discussed may seem small, but in reality it is a matter of truth or error. What about the so-called bigger issues. You need to settle these in your heart once for all based on Bible knowledge.

Can you defend from the Bible your position on salvation? Can you clearly explain to someone how they can know for sure their sins are forgiven and that they have been given new life from Christ? Can you show them from the Bible?

What about eternal security? It is not about what the church teaches. Have you decided for yourself if your salvation can ever be lost, or are you sealed by God forever? Can you sit down with someone and open the Word of God and state your case?

How about the Bible version you use? Do you have a Scriptural reason for your choice, or does anything go?

What do you call sin and why, based on the Bible? What about homosexuality? What about abortion? Do not just parrot some other. Show me Scripture to make your point either way.

The list could go on, but you get the picture. Know that you know that you know, and do not be moved. David writes in Psalm 16:8, "I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved."

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Comments 15 comments

Norine Williams 16 months ago

MY GOD! I wish ALL felt as you do and did as the Bereans did in Acts 17:11 "...search the Scriptures daily to see if these things are so" when introduced to truth in His Word which contradicts their "preconceived ideas!"

You are right in saying that MOST believe "The Word of God did not matter. He held tenaciously to his misguided beliefs. - not willing to examine any evidence that might contradict his preconceived ideas." And so it is with ALL! Rather than doing as Scripture says they run and hide which is not according to Scripture! As you stated "My prayer is that you will investigate these and other Biblical teachings for what they are - the Word of God. Know that you know that you know. I Peter 3:15 gives us this instruction - "But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you . . . ."

When someone challenges your beliefs can you stand toe to toe and defend them Biblically? It is not about traditions taught by the church. It is not the philosophies of preachers that are passed off as Bible truth. What does the Bible actually say?"

I've been trying to tell Hubbers this since day one! Don't let Satan ("the world") deceive you, for it is his job "to kill, steal, and destroy" (John 10:10) and he's doing a great job of it through "tradition" and/or "religion!" II Timothy 2:15 says "STUDY..." according to Isaiah 28:10-13 within "the right dispensation!"

We (as a country) have moved away from the Scriptures for so long that "believers" BELIEVE what they are being "taught" and not studying for themselves which leads to nothing but "eternal damnation!" We (as a country) believe right is wrong and wrong is right based on what we have been "taught!" The Word of God says in Isaiah 5:20 "Woe unto them who call evil, good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!"

Well, if they think "going to church" listening to whomever will save them or believing "tradition," they are in for a rude awakening! For GOD has left instructions (The Bible) and it's up to ALL to "Study to show thyself approved!"

Now concerning "mistranslations or errors" in Scriptures! I "BELIEVE" the Holy Spirit (Jesus) when He said in John 16:13 that the Holy Spirit "...would guide you into ALL truth..." Don't you? That's how I know that "I Know, What I Know, What I Know!"


lifegate profile image

lifegate 16 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hi Norine,

Thanks for stopping by and adding your thoughts. You used some very good verses in making your points. Thanks again!


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 16 months ago from Southern Minnesota

Well stated Bill...

"The issue is, are you willing to examine the Bible for yourself?"

It is of such great value and necessity to read the scriptures for ourselves and not just single verses but the whole thing cover to cover and when we get done with that we should read it again. We so much miss God's big picture, themes, patterns, and meaning when we don't.

So many quotes of famous preachers teachers and "Christian" cliches with so little understanding of the real meaning and content of God's Word, it seems.

I find that, sadly, many like to do what they have always done without question and are content with that. I appreciate your challenge for us all to seek him for ourselves and as Norine above quoted in reference to being Berean like to...

"...search the Scriptures daily to see if these things are so"

God bless!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 16 months ago from The Caribbean

Bill, you cause us to rethink the importance of knowing what we're talking about. Someone pointed out to me also that the Bible does state that Noah preached for 120 years (something I've heard many times). You issued a worthy challenge that we search the Scriptures for ourselves. Thanks for the challenge!


billybuc profile image

billybuc 16 months ago from Olympia, WA

I'm reminded back when I taught at a Catholic school....I would always ask the kids how many of them were Catholic....most would raise their hand...then I asked them what it meant to be a Catholic.....they couldn't tell me. They had no idea what the distinguishing traits were of the Catholic religion. Bravo for this excellent article.


lifegate profile image

lifegate 16 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hi Tammy,

Your sentence, "I find that, sadly, many like to do what they have always done without question and are content with that" sums up the problem. Thanks for your input and added thoughts. It is truly sad, but I've been there -done that!


lifegate profile image

lifegate 16 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

You're welcome, MsDora. It's so easy to just accept another's viewpoint rather than take the time to study for ourselves. Of course, we'll be held accountable for how we handle the Word of God. As always, it's great to hear form you, and thanks for stopping by.


lifegate profile image

lifegate 16 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hello Mr. Holland,

Those students were blessed to have you for a teacher, but their response is so common among church goers these days. We need to know that we know that we know. Thanks for making the trip, Bill!


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 15 months ago from The Beautiful South

Lot of interesting challenges here Bill! I will put a follow on it. I still have to finish one of Dora's challenges that I have just gotten into but then I would love to do yours; you bring up some great questions. If there is a study book on it anywhere it could be a great help. I use them and know I may not completely agree but they open up your soul, spirit and mind I think to learn so much. Like years ago I read Late Great Planet Earth by Hal Lindsey and I did not believe in things like that but I tell you I learned so much in that study, just getting into the bible searching brings us so many rewards of knowledge and then brings up so many more questions we never even had!


lifegate profile image

lifegate 15 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hi Jackie,

Glad you were able to stop by! As far as a study book, what exactly was it you wanted to study. Any particular topic? If so, I might be able to recommend something. I agree there's much to learn, and we can learn every time we set ourselves to do it. Thanks for visiting. I always look forward to you coming around!


Norine Williams 15 months ago

STUDY SCRIPTURE FOR YOURSELF!

Did not Jeremiah 31:31-33; Hebrews 8:10 and 10:16 (GOD/The Holy Spirit/Jesus) tell us in these Scriptures that He would [paraphrasing] "...put his laws in our hearts, and write them in our minds?" Did He not "promise" the Holy Spirit (John 14:26; 16:13) who would do this? Did He not send the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:2) which began doing this? Afterwards, did He (Holy Spirit) not "tell the apostles" what to tell us to do for salvation? (Acts 2:42)

If "ANYONE" believe we are under The New Covenant, then they should "study" (II Timothy 2:15) "these things to see if they are so." (Acts 17:11)

For Scripture says in Galatians 1:6-9 [paraphrasing] "If ANYONE, even an angel from heaven, preach ANY OTHER GOSPEL...LET HIM BE ACCURSED!" TWICE!

It's a "WARNING" believers! TAKE HEED!


lifegate profile image

lifegate 15 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hi Norine,

I'm glad you caught the spirit of this article for far too few get it, nor will they heed the warning. Thanks for stopping by and sounding the trumpet!


Norine Williams 15 months ago

We're living in "The Last Days" and He is "pouring out His Spirit on ALL" (Joel 2:28; Acts 2:17)!

TAKE HEED! "STUDY" (II Timothy 2:15) the Scriptures and "Lean not to "your own" understanding" (Proverbs 3:5)!


Norine Williams 15 months ago

Thank you for allowing me to speak! Most don't want to hear if differs from their "beliefs!" Thanks again! Keep ALL "studying!"


lifegate profile image

lifegate 15 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

No problem, Norine.

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