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  • Writer's pictureDwight Smith

Learning To THINK...Rooted In The Bible, Part Two

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Part Two

Why is it important to think?

It is important to think because we represent God. Or to say it more bluntly, what people all too often think about us, they think about God. Bible based teaching is important in this regard. But, when it comes to biblical measurements, our lives are more important than our ministries or vacations. The ways in which our lives demonstrate what we believe is the maturing result of learning to think, and to think rooted from Scripture, with the harvest being righteousness in action.

This is the potential rub. There is danger in our humanity. As one patriarch warns, “He who watches not this thoroughly, who is not exactly skilled in the knowledge of himself, will never be disentangled from one temptation or another all his days.” (Overcoming Sin and Temptation by John Owen.)

The longer one walks with God on this earth, the more we realize that there is great “protective” importance in eternal and therefore objective truth, in God’s wisdom found in His book, the Bible.

In Hebrews 5:11-6:12, the writer warns the readers that, “About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God.”

Danger awaits those who through dull ears no longer really hear, and seek to understand....think!

The implications are plain to see. Such people are not acquainted with righteousness. The most obvious measurement of true wisdom is righteousness, seen, felt, lived. “You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child.”

Such people do not take in mature food, therefore do not know the difference between good and evil. The good which is fed by the Spirit and grows eternal life, and evil which is fed by the world, the flesh and the devil, and grows corruption. “But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.”

This is precisely the challenge of new life in Jesus. We were created to grow beyond the baby things of entry into salvation. “Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity....” We were recreated to grow and walk more every day in the righteousness that has been given to us in Jesus. We were not recreated to continue to walk in the muck of disobedience.

Why? Because it is impossible to “be born again” twice, again and again and again. The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus is applied to us once when we are born again. “For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.” (6:4-6)

Even the nature of land that is properly fed to its nature, is to produce a crop. “For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it, and produces a crop useful to those for whose sake it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God. But if it bears thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near to being cursed, and its end is to be burned.” (6:7-8)

So, we who have been born again in Jesus produce a crop of righteousness in our new life.

The conclusion is stark and compelling. Don’t allow laziness to enter in, or your hope wavers. Instead, imitate those who have finished the course demonstrating faith and patience and thereby show that they have inherited the promise. “Though we speak in this way, yet in your case, beloved, we feel sure of better things—things that belong to salvation. For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do. And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end, so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” (6:9-12)

Learning to think rooted in scripture helps us, and therefore the others for whom we are responsible to keep life (through eternity) in focus. To fend off the noise of the contextual truth that seeks to engulf us.

The writer of Hebrews challenges us not to simply “try.” God calls us to the constant use of what He has put into His “born again” ones!

I have found for myself that there have been phases of learning to think over the more than 50 years of helping to give leadership to the church. The desire was placed early, I think by observing my father and his constant pursuit of wisdom and understanding. I would hope that this constant pursuit rubbed off early in my life and cast the trajectory of my own submission to wisdom and understanding.


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