Mere Head Knowledge

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JM

Puritan Board Doctor
Do you not find and feel sometimes that God has given you an understanding heart? - that you are not, as you once were, in ignorance of God and His dear Son?

Is not your mind enlightened to understand the meaning of the Scriptures as they are opened up from time to time to your heart by the power of God? Do you see no beauty or blessedness in the word of God?

Is it not commended to your conscience as divine truth? Has it not a liberating, sanctifying power and influence upon your soul?

Do you not see at times wonders in the word of God, depths of wisdom, heights of grace, blessings and favours revealed and made known in it which seem to surpass all conception and all expression? Have you not seen sometimes "in one line of Scripture," to use an expression of Bunyan’s, "more than you could well tell how to stand under?"

Is all this understanding to be thrown away and trodden under foot as mere head knowledge? Is it not rather an understanding which God has given us, and by which we know Him that is true?

Let us not then confound these two distinct things or despise one of God’s best gifts, but ever desire to be "filled with all spiritual understanding;" yea, "unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgment of the mystery of God and of the Father and of Christ, in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." Col 1:9 Col 2:2,3

You may say, "How am I to distinguish between mere head knowledge and this spiritual understanding?" I will tell you. When a special light is cast into your mind; when the word is opened up in its spiritual, experimental meaning; when the Holy Ghost seals it with sweetness and power upon your heart, and you not only understand what you read but receive it in faith, feel its savour, and enjoy its blessedness. Is not this a very different thing from lifeless, barren head knowledge? But view also its fruits; look at what this enlightened understanding has done for us! Until we had it, the vail of unbelief and ignorance was over our mind; we stumbled at noon as at night, groped for the wall like the blind, and could not find our way to the city. We read the Scriptures, it is true, but knew nothing of their spiritual meaning; and though we talked perhaps about God and Jesus Christ, and it may be prattled a little about the truth of God, we were really shut up in the grossest darkness.

HEAVENLY REALITIES AND DIVINE CERTAINTIES (Part 2)
 

Mayflower

Puritan Board Junior

Civbert

Puritan Board Junior
You may say, "How am I to distinguish between mere head knowledge and this spiritual understanding?" I will tell you. When a special light is cast into your mind; when the word is opened up in its spiritual, experimental meaning; when the Holy Ghost seals it with sweetness and power upon your heart, and you not only understand what you read but receive it in faith, feel its savour, and enjoy its blessedness. Is not this a very different thing from lifeless, barren head knowledge? But view also its fruits; look at what this enlightened understanding has done for us! Until we had it, the vail of unbelief and ignorance was over our mind; we stumbled at noon as at night, groped for the wall like the blind, and could not find our way to the city. We read the Scriptures, it is true, but knew nothing of their spiritual meaning; and though we talked perhaps about God and Jesus Christ, and it may be prattled a little about the truth of God, we were really shut up in the grossest darkness.

HEAVENLY REALITIES AND DIVINE CERTAINTIES (Part 2)

There is not such thing as "mere head knowlege". The idea that you can "know" something with you head and reject it with your heart is unbiblical. The mind and the heart are the same thing in Scripture. Either you believe the Word, or you do not.

Now it is possble to "understand" something and not believe it. But understanding and knowing are not the same thing. You must actually believe a truth before you can claim to know it. Many athiest "understand" the Bible better than many Christians. They have knowledge of the Word - but do not believe what it says. Only Christian's know the Word because they believe it as God's truth.
 
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