A Voice in the
Re: We are the scholars - You are stupid!
"Then they reviled him and said, You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples. We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from. The man answered and said to them, Why, this is a marvelous thing, that you do not know where He is from; yet He has opened my eyes! Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him. Since the world began it has never been heard that anyone opened the eyes of one who was born blind. If this Man were not from God, He would not be able to do anything. They answered and said to him, You were born completely in sins, and do you teach us? And they drove him out." (Jn9:28-34)
Dear Brother and Sister in Christ, you who have received salvation through repentance and faith in the shed blood of Jesus: When you have been in a congregation or other such entity that calls itself "christian", and you were politicked out after you started stirring up waves and began rocking the boat, what were the reasons given for their persecution against you? Was it: You are presenting Biblical Truth to us and we don't want it! ??
No! Typically the rhetoric goes something like: You are so unloving; you are being divisive; you are not submitting to the chain-of-command authority of the organizational leaders; your wife said something that offended so-n-so; just who do you think you are, you think that (lone) you are right and (all) of us are wrong?; you're so judgemental, remember "judge not that ye not be judged"; you think that you have a corner on wisdom and know-it-all; we have university and seminary scholars on our side with letters of the alphabet behind their names from the University of Hoity Toit, and so what are your 'credentials'?; your problem is that you haven't read any of the reformation and puritan writers; you are going against the rich heritage of fundamentalism; you are filled with pride; you need to humble yourself and submit to -us- who God put in authority over you; just who do you think you are?!?
Only in rare cases, like Israel to Jeremiah, do they admit to not wanting to follow God, and preferring their idolatry; like when Israel insisted that they -would- continue worshiping the Queen of Heaven. (Jer44:17,25) The usual scenario is that those doing the persecuting do so in the name of the church; as Jesus said, thinking that they "offer God service" (Jn16:2) They claim to be "Christian", and castigate -you- as being the 'rebel'.
Or, even in a more benign example, what do most seminary graduates, and subsequently those in ministry, think is necessary to be qualified for ministry? What do they feel is necessary for spiritual growth? Most will agree that -programs- are needed in 'teaching' and 'discipleship'. After all, did not Paul list "pastors and teachers" as given by God for the "equipping of the saints" and for "building up of the body of Christ" and that this, then, will create "unity" (Eph4:11-13) ? Therefore, if you disagree with the majority, you need 'us' to teach you. If somebody had gone "foreward" and/or "prayed -the- prayer", or been "soul-won", they need -human- mentoring.
And for those doing the teaching, discipling and mentoring: what are their study tools? What prepares them to be 'qualified' to teach others? Good doses of 'methods' in teaching, psychology; and be sure to read all the "church fathers" and "great" men of the reformation. Also, be sure to read heavily in the commentaries by so-n-so and what's-his-face. Unless you read all these works of the great historical heritage, you are hopelessly unfit... and how can you be sure that you, yourself, are not straying into heresy?
What's missing from all of this?
How is the "young man" to attain unto righteousness? "By taking heed according to [God's] Word" (Ps119:9) How does a grown man become fulfilled in the issues of life? "All Scripture" (2Tim3:16) "The first thing about wisdom is: Get wisdom. And with all your getting, get understanding." (Pr4:7) And, where does wisdom originate? "The fear of Jehovah is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction." (Pr1:7)
Now... before this blind man, given sight, appeared before the religious and scholar elites, they had already been having discussions about Jesus, concluding what they thought of Him, and their disdain for 'ordinary' people; what Babylon today calls "laity".
Jesus has been preaching on the public square, proclaiming Himself the Water of Life, and many people are becoming convinced, "Truly this is the Prophet" (Jn7:40) and some are positive that Jesus -has- to be "the Christ" (vs41) The rulers (chief priests and pharisees) catch on to how Jesus is being elevated in people's minds, so they send officers to apprehend Jesus. When they return empty-handed, and quizzed as to 'why', they reply, "No man ever spoke like this man" (vs46)
Let's make a quick observation right here. What sorts of people get assigned to duty as officers? Gutter bum wino scumbags? No! They are usually considered to be the more upstanding people of the community, with a bit higher level of intelligence and 'awareness' to -facts-, and not as likely to be swayed by emotional manipulations. When the tabloids speak of UFO encounters or other such 'events', they often try to legitimize their stories by including observations of the incidents by police, airline pilots and military personnel, people usually not considered to be given to flights-of-fancy. These are also typically NOT 'politicians' with axes to grind.
These -officers- return, having had their hearts grabbed by Jesus' words. And what do the rulers retort? "Have you not also been led astray? Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed into Him? But this crowd that does not know the Law is accursed." (vs47-49)
What are the rulers, in reality, saying? The people are STUPID. They are uneducated, and haven't studied the law...LIKE -WE- HAVE. Has anybody from the field of education, religion and politics bought into Jesus? We are a notch 'above' all them. You officers: why would you stoop to their level? You're 'better' than that!
(Sorta like... recently a top government official was heard making the statement something to the effect of: Most Americans are too stupid to be entrusted with the right to vote. That this country would be better off if we didn't have elections...! Can you believe it!?!)
So then, as one might be reading along in the narrative, Nicodemus (who went to actually -speak- with Jesus one evening ch3) gives them a bit of their own methodology and reminder of the 'law', of which they claim to be 'experts'. (BTW, you know what an "expert" is, right? X == in math, the 'unknown' quanitity. "spurt" == a drip under great pressue. These guys are a bunch of 'drips' who don't know anything!) Dr. Nick suggests to them, without coming right out and putting himself on a limb, "Does our Law judge a man before it hears him and knows what he does?" (vs51)
Nick is one of their own, so they deride him, and go home, huffing and puffing that Prophecy doesn't say anything about Messiah coming from Galilee. Not following their own rules of investigation, they don't realize that Jesus was born in Bethlehem. (Mic5:2) But the stage is set for the blind man to appear before them. They're already in a lather about Jesus.
So, what does this -uneducated- (stupid/poor) man reply to their hounding? I don't know who this man is, but I find it amazing that you don't. (Ouch!) Throughout history, when has it ever been recorded that a man blind from birth was ever made to see? So what if He gave me sight on the Sabbath! Who ordained the Sabbath? Did not God? Who is it who gives and restores life? Is it not God? How could any mere 'man' give sight in this manner, unless he had some incredibly direct ties to the Almighty?
You stupid simpleton! You with your little pea-brain trying to teach -US-, are you??? ...with all our vast degrees of academia?? GET OUT!!
Ah, yes.... the "SIMPLICITY that is in Christ" (2Co11:3)
Nathanael had also asked the same question the rulers did, "...can anything good come out of Nazareth?" What did Philip respond? "Come and see". (Jn1:46) See for yourself.
Oh, B'but!!! These simple disciples did not have the great Puritan writers, or the Fathers of the reformation. Why...Jesus, Himself, didn't have all of their wisdom! How could any of these people have hoped to start something as extensive and global like the Church? Jesus did not have the "preserved Word of God in the English language, the KJV"; how could He have hoped to proclaim God's Word to the people?
I am continually amazed when I hear/read people proclaim such things. Do they not hear themselves? The rulers were just like modern evolutionists. There is a set of principles by which science 'investigates' things to formulate assumptions, which are then verified with testing. There is utterly NO (scientifically credible) PROOF for evolution, and when creationists provide proof for things the way Scripture records them (can you say, "Noah's flood"? 2Pet3:4-6), they hold creationists in disdain, typically, as being supposedly 'uneducated'.
As a side-note here: You know... During the time of those Puritans and 'great' men, whose writings we simpletons are chided for not reading, guess what the Catholic church of Babylon was doing? During those "dark" ages, starting with Pope Innocent in the 1200s, Babylon of Rome was -forbidding- the reading of the Scriptures by the laity, on pain of imprisonment, fine, torture and/or death. It was also illegal to 'own' a Bible, and any copies found were destroyed, and its owners prosecuted. The only people allowed access (legally) were the priests, and certain "qualified" individuals who could obtain 'permits/licences' to own/read the Scriptures. You see, the Dragon's church (Rev20:2) knows that to read the Scriptures can result in salvation/faith (Rom10:17); so how is he going to keep people out of God's Kingdom? Keep them from reading God's Word, and point them to the writings of men and call it "christian". Call it -great- 'wisdom'. Call it scholarship. And when a person has learned it well, give them praise by awarding alphabet letters behind their name. That way, they will think they 'know-it-all' and don't need anything else....like humility, repentance and receiving Jesus Christ by faith, apart from the hierarchy of the magisterium.
So then... to those who insist that a new Christian cannot grow properly without human mentoring or the academic tomes of various 'famous' authors, or that a Believer's doctrinal integrity could be compromised without such works of fame, what about....?
When the Ethiopian had been immersed by Philip, after having confessed his faith in Jesus Christ, it says that Philip was caught away by the Holy Spirit and was taken to Azotus, and the Ethiopian went his way, back home, 'alone'. (Ac8:39) How was he to survive and grow spiritually? He didn't have any disciples accompanying him to mentor, nor did he have the Puritan writers. Ah, but, he had a scroll of Isaiah (vs30), the Scriptures (vs32-35)
When Naaman was saved, after being cured of leprosy, his situation was even more stark: He went home without any copy of the Scriptures, no local witness or personal mentoring; plus his position required that he accompany his master to the pagan temples, and Elisha responds, "Go in peace". (2Ki5:19) Perhaps he did like Joseph did, in bondage in Egypt?
What does God require of us? To be learned in the scholarship of the writings of great men, or to "do homage in spirit and truth". (Jn4:24)
"For he is not a Jew (Believer) who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh; but he is a Jew (Believer) who is one inwardly; and circumcision is of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God." (Rom2:28-29)
"O man, He has declared to you what is good. And what does Jehovah require of you, but to do justice, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God." (Mic6:8) Is this not the very core of Godly living; and is available from the Law of God, the conscience, written on the heart? (Rom2:15)
Related Topic: Church Scholarship