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A Teachable Spirit
A Teachable Teacher
As a writer, I typically don’t like to write something until I’ve researched it thoroughly, setting the self-expectation that what I write won’t need to be revised over and over again. There’s a high accountability put on writers because what is written will, no doubt, plant a seed that will stay within the readers’ minds and influence their lives in some significant way. I revere James 3:5, which states “Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment.”
When I labor over understanding scripture(s) I try not to write about the subject until I feel I’m ready. What I’ve discovered is, the Lord births the concept; I get inspired to write about it, and no sooner than I’ve published the material, He continues to reveal more and more. Truly, there are a few difficult subjects I’ve written about that required not only courage to write, but willingness to edit as the Lord leads. My goal is to keep my hubs as accurate as possible, with the up-to-the-minute understanding by the Holy Spirit. As students in the Lord, learning will continue until the day we die, at which time 1 Cor 13:12 states we will know all things, even as we are known.
The quest for knowledge is noble, for Hosea 4:6 tells us, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being My priest” (Rev 1:6; 5:11). In our walk with God we will consistently struggle between carnal understanding and spiritual understanding. There is only one, absolute truth. Even the disciples couldn’t help but understand things Jesus said with a carnal mind. In Luke 24:45, it was Jesus who “opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.” Without the Spirit of Christ we cannot possibly understand them.
As readers, we know there are many authors out there that have written books and articles over the years. Some will admit when something they once held true is no longer embraced (like Perry Stone), which shows great humility. Others refuse to budge from what they’ve written to save face. That is pride and is not of God. While striving for knowledge is good, there is a danger of pride (1 Cor 8:1). And if one only seeks knowledge without the help of the Holy Spirit he will be “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim 3:7).
Does a person need to have a theology degree to study and write on the things of God? With tools such as the Strongs Exhaustive Concordance, Bible dictionaries, lexicons, and commentaries, even the lay person can study to show himself approved (2 Tim 2:15). Unfortunately, every school of theology leans toward a particular doctrine, whether Catholicism or Calivinism, for example. Even those with doctorate and post-doctorate degrees still struggle with attaining absolute truth. If there’s one thing I’ve learned well as a lay person, it is truly much easier to become indoctrinated than to undo indoctrination.
Paul wrote to the Church at Corinth about these things:
1 Cor 1:12 “For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe’s people, that there are quarrels among you. Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, ‘I am of Paul,’ and ‘I of Apollos,’ and ‘I of Cephas [Peter]’ and ‘I of Christ’ [meaning only the ‘red letters’ and nothing else]. Has Christ been divided? Paul was not crucified for you, was he? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius so that no one would say you were baptized in my name.” Truly, as believers, we are baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus and no one else! (Acts 2:38; 10:48; 19:5)
1 Cor 3:4 “I gave you milk to drink, not solid food; for you were not yet able to receive it. Indeed, even now you are not yet able, for you are still fleshly. For since there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not fleshly, and are you not walking like mere men? For when one says, ‘I am of Paul’, and another, ‘I am of Apollos’, are you not mere men What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one. I planted, Apollos watered, but God was causing the growth. So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth.”
As we grow in the knowledge of God, we’re going to be given stronger ‘food’. Though we are to desire the sincere milk of the Word (1 Pet 2:2), we are not to remain as babes, tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine (Eph 4:14). There will come a point when we have to be willing and able to receive strong meat. “But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.”
1 John 2:17 is the TRUTH: "As for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him."
Iron Sharpens Iron
Reading and studying the Word is not only imperative to test the knowledge of others, but even the knowledge we think we have (Acts 17:11). Shedding indoctrination is not an easy task. Confusion is not of God (1 Cor 14:33). He wills to guide us into all truth, according to John 16:13. Does this mean we shouldn’t teach or preach until we’ve arrived to the full knowledge of the truth? No. It means we do the very best we can with what God chooses to reveal to us. God has been faithful, in using my fellow saints and by His Spirit, to continually sharpen me. If I find I am even slightly off the path, I will CHANGE (repent) and make it right as soon as possible. This may require edit after edit, but when His peace is finally present, I will rest.
I appreciate my readers, and also thank you for your patience with me over the years. As I get excited to see growth in my fellow hubbers, I hope you also get excited to see growth in me. We should never stagnate, thinking ‘I’ve arrived’, but should remain open to continued learning.
It’s been a joy for me to see others here on HubPages ‘change’ their long-held beliefs when they get enlightened by the Word. Likewise, I have changed some of my long-held beliefs due to studying the Word for myself, rather than solely leaning on those with theology degrees and indoctrinated opinions.
Prov 15:12 states, “A scoffer does not love one who reproves him, He will not go to the wise.” 2 Tim 3:16-17 tell us “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” If we don’t want to be teachable, receive reproof, be corrected or trained, the Word of God will not be welcome in our lives. Truly, “iron sharpens iron” (Prov 27:17) and “in a multitude of counselors there is safety.” (Prov 11:14).
Keep on pressing on, as I shall. Thank you for being my brothers and sisters, fellow servants in the Lord and in His Word. God bless you, as you bless me!