There’s no doubt that New Testament Christians are the most spiritually blessed people on the face of the earth (Ephesians 1:3 NKJV). The church of our Lord has more highly educated members in the secular sense than ever before in its history. But for all of our secular education, we have never experienced more members destitute of a knowledge of God’s word than today.
Our Lord once told the Sadducees regarding their ignorance of marriage relative to the resurrection:
“You are mistaken [deceived], not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels of God in heaven” (Matthew 22:29 NKJV).
Far too many members of the Lord’s church substitute their own explanations and experiences for the Scriptures (i.e., Matthew 15:3-9 NKJV; Mark 7:1-13 NKJV). Such substitutions are no more acceptable today than they were in the days of Cain’s sacrifice (Genesis 4:4 NKJV; Hebrews 11:4 NKJV).
In Noah’s generation, folks were too concerned with “eating and drinking, marrying an giving in marriage” than they were with their impending judgment from God (Matthew 24:38 NKJV). Jesus said they were drowned in the flood simply because they “did not know” (Matthew 24:39 NKJV). However, they were not ignorant of God’s impending judgment upon them because they were warned by Noah’s preaching to them for 120 years (Genesis 6:3 NKJV; 1 Peter 3:18-20 NKJV). They were ignorant, but willfully ignorant, not giving heed to the Lord’s word nor to His warnings (2 Peter 3:3-6 KJV). And because they continued in their sinful lifestyles, “the flood came and took them all away” (Matthew 24:39 NKJV).
Brethren and friends, if we do not know and understand the Scriptures [remain willfully ignorant], we will end up like those folks in Noah’s time. As in the Sadducees’ case, we will have deceived ourselves. Hosea put it in the strongest words possible when he stated:
“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me; Because you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children” (Hosea 4:6 NKJV).
God doesn’t want us to be ignorant, for time after time He has stated through His representatives:
- “For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant …..” (Romans 11:25 NKJV).
- “Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant …..” (1 Corinthians 10:1 KJV).
- “For we do not want you to be ignorant, brethren …..” (2 Corinthians 1:8 NKJV).
- “But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren …..” (1 Thessalonians 4:13 NKJV).
- “But, beloved, be not ignorant …..” (2 Peter 3:8 KJV).
Thankfully, God has provided us the cure for spiritual ignorance, and that cure is found in 2 Timothy 2:15. The American Standard Version of 1901 states:
“Give diligence to present thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15 ASV) [footnote – holding a straight course in the word of truth].
Brethren, do we really want to revert back to the spiritual ignorance found in Noah’s day and in the spiritual “elite” of Matthew and Mark’s day? If we do, we will only receive “tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek” (Romans 2:9 NKJV).