Knowledge still is power

Published: Thursday, February 1, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 31, 2007 at 1:43 p.m.
'What are you going to school for now?'' asked an individual who heard that I was returning to school for another degree. As a pastor and teacher, I believe there is a need to continue equipping my congregation and myself by pursuing every educational opportunity that's available.
In order to influence my congregation to become educated, I first must set the example. Continual education is a must for the 21st century pastor, who must seek to be knowledgeable, teachable and resourceful.
Hosea, the northern kingdom prophet of Israel, noted that the destruction of any nation and society would be the result of the lack of knowledge of God. When knowledge is rejected, the end result is chaos and destruction.
The nation of Israel was in the declining years as a nation. The decline was the result of spiritual rejection of God and a moral decay of pursuing that which was not righteous. The nation of Israel was confronted by God for its unacceptable lifestyle. The prophet Hosea called the nation to repent and seek God's knowledge and become a holy nation again.
America is a nation that opens the doors of educational opportunities for those who are willing to enter. My younger daughter, Nakecyia, called me recently to share with me her first night of class at Santa Fe Community College. Nakecyia is a single parent with two children who works full time during the day.
She said, "Daddy, if you and Kate (my wife) could go back to school at your age, so can I." Kate and I traveled near Dothan, Ala., weekly for four years to continue our education. Scholarships, grants and loans are available to those who might find financial difficulties pursuing an education.
One must enter the classroom with a teachable spirit. Your attitude toward learning can help you or hurt you. Those who are pouring out their knowledge to you are selected according to their expertise and specialties.
The Bible noted that Christ came to teach us those things that were essential to know God and to do His will, but the people rejected God's knowledge. They rejected the knowledge Jesus was imparting to them because they could not go beyond the visible human vessel set before them.
Paul put it so vividly when he writes to the Romans, "Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. For I bear them witness that they have zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish there own righteousness, and have not submitted to the righteousness of God.'' (Romans 10:1-2) The Romans were infested with a spirit that refused knowledge, causing them to fail in their attempt to please God.
Having knowledge will enable an individual to become resourceful. Knowledge is power, but it becomes more powerful when it is shared with others. "You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also." (2 Timothy 2:1-2).
Paul instructed Timothy to study to show himself approved, but he also noted that the knowledge he received was to be imparted to others. When we share our knowledge with others, we will find our imparted knowledge will be taught to others who were former students of ours.
The young King Solomon came to the throne as Israel's new king. He inherited the throne from his father, King David. He came to the throne very fearful and did not know how to be an effective leader. God came to Him and asked him to make a prayer request of his desire.
Now Solomon could have asked God for riches and lands, but He asked for knowledge to lead God's people. God was so pleased with Solomon's request until He gave him more than he prayed for. God imparted to Solomon knowledge, wisdom and understanding. (1 King:7-1:3).
Solomon is considered as the wisest man who has ever lived. Solomon's wisdom and knowledge helped saved his country and many others as well.f-z As pastors and leaders of God's people, we must do our best to continue our education by becoming continued learners. The members sitting in the pews are recipients of many institutional degrees and accomplishments; therefore, we must do our best to be qualified to lead them and equip them as resourceful servants of God.
The Rev. Dr. W.G. Mayberry is pastor of Pleasant Hill Missionary Baptist Church of Gainesville and St. John Missionary Baptist Church of Melrose.

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