Authentic or Counterfeit?
(You can read the introduction to this 8 week study here. You can also click the tag at the bottom of this post and all of the Biblical Motherhood posts will be shown to you.)
Please ask the Lord to speak to you today from His Word, and to teach you to discern the difference between the knowledge of the world and the knowledge of Him.
"For it is written: "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent," 1 Corinthians 1:19.
We had a kitten that had a strange habit of jumping up into my husband's shirts, which were in the closet on hangers. The first time, I heard muffled meowing and knew he was somewhere in that closet, but only by going through, shirt by shirt, could I find where he was stuck. It only took once for me to learn where he would be. It took him longer to figure out that those shirts did not contain Jim! He was looking for someone, and got something instead!
In 1 Timothy 6:20,21, we find Paul warning Timothy against the same danger:
"O Timothy! Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge - by professing it some have strayed concerning the faith. Grace be with you. Amen,"
Knowledge is important, and the desire to learn is built into every one of us. Our desire to know is given by God, and genuine, real truth is the only way to an authentic education. For every authentic reality God has for us, Satan devises a counterfeit to make us feel sure of ourselves, yet confused. Only the genuine reality will hold up during a storm when the wild winds, the circumstances of life, blow hard against us! We will take a look at authentic wisdom, and its counterfeit, "what is falsely called knowledge," today.
From Hosea 4:1, what is the charge God brings against those who "inhabit the land"?
See Hosea 4:6. What destroys God's own people?
Please record what is the result of God's people having no knowledge (Isaiah 5:13).
Slavery in the physical realm is another person having control of your body. In the realm of the soul (mind, emotions, will), bondage is someone's control of your thoughts, your feelings, your decisions.
What controls your thoughts will affect your feelings and your decisions. The spiritual battle is waged over your mind.
In Hosea chapter 5 God speaks through Hosea to explain to the people the reason for their poverty of mind. In verse 11 He addresses a specific family line (Ephraim), but this also applies to any of God's people. Please copy Hosea 5:11 here and mark the phrases which tell their condition, and how they got there.
Webster's 1828 dictionary defines precept as follows: "In a general sense, any commandment or order intended as an authoritative rule of action, especially applied to moral conduct. "
We see that in focusing on the rules of human acceptance, God's people were controlled and oppressed by other people. They lacked discernment in life's situations and had lost sight of God's viewpoint. Oppression like this causes a heaviness and dullness of spirit. It overburdens, is unreasonable, and gives you no freedom for creativity.
Can you think of any area(s) of your life in which you have been walking by human precept?
In these areas you may notice a tendency to feel inferior at times, or to be very self-confident. It is a knowledge that "puffs up" (makes prideful), and is actually a counterfeit of the knowledge of God.
1 Corinthians 8:1 says, "...We know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffs up, but love edifies."
1 Timothy 6:20,21, "...avoiding...what is falsely called knowledge."
See James 3:14,15. What is God's definition of false knowledge (verse 14)?
What is its source (verse 15)?
The knowledge of God (wisdom) doesn't focus on humans as its point of interest. It is completely taken with God! How does God define wisdom? Is true wisdom a thing or a Person (1 Corinthians 1:30)?
The knowledge of the glory, the reality, of God is the knowledge that God is for us. We must know and understand that He is God, He is real, and we are not Him and will never hold His position as God. False knowledge (selfish ambition) is what puffs us up to think that we have control of our lives, that we are, in effect, God. But we aren't, and He calls us to humble ourselves to acknowledge the truth of His reality while we are still on the earth, before we enter the realm of eternity in heaven or hell.
When we trust in the ways of selfish ambition, what does God say will happen to our false security? Isaiah 30:12-14.
His remedy is Jesus! Please write God's counsel in verse 15!
Also copy God's instruction from Jeremiah 6:16.
When we study, we will either study to know God through His creation and the skills He gives us, or we will study to know and exalt ourselves. It has to do with the motive of our heart: why we are studying, and what, or Who, we are studying.
The religious leaders of the day took away the "key to knowledge" (Luke 11:52) by a counterfeit; by putting the people in fear of the leaders rather than focusing the people on God. If we don't understand the Way God has provided to Himself, we will never know that we can come to Him in full confidence in Him, never mind what any man says! God must become greater in our vision than any man. We must fix our eyes on Him to see how things really are.
What are some benefits the knowledge of God will bring to our lives?
Psalm 119:29 (something God will do in you!)
Isaiah 33:17-19 (What will be your focus, your vision in life? V.17)
The Lord has such good things for us as we learn of Him in all that we study! He longs to fill us with good things and satisfy and refresh us! If you will come to Him, He will never disappoint you. You will be His student; He will be your Teacher.
"Blessed are they who keep His statutes and seek Him with all their heart," Psalm 119:2.
Please pray with me:
Dear Father, I know that You are God, and yet I have such a tendency to think that education belongs to men instead of to You. I've sought after the approval of teachers on this earth and have found my attention on them instead of on You. I have been hurt by oppression, and I have joined in on that oppression toward others. This is not Your heart. Please take this out of me, and replace it with Your heart for learning. I receive Your forgiveness, and thank You that Your ways are not like mine. Please teach me Your ways. I love You, Lord, because You are good! In Jesus' name, A-men.