Why Right Thinking is so Important for Christians
At a recent conference in Germany, John Piper talked about why right thinking is so important for Christians:
1. It is possible to have strong feelings and be lost if the feelings are not based on knowledge (Romans 10:1-2).
2. God has planned that thinking about the Bible is the means he uses to give understanding (2 Timothy 2:7).
3. Paul is given as an example of reasoning with the Bible (Acts 17:2-3).
4. Jesus assumes and requires that we will use logic in understanding both what is natural and what is spiritual (Luke 12:54-57).
5. Jesus refuses to deal with people who use their reason to conceal truth (Matthew 21:23-27).
6. Thirteen times in Paul’s letters, he asks the question, “Do you not know?” Paul assumes that if his readers knew something, they would see things differently, feel differently, and act differently.
7. The Bible tells us that Christ has given pastors and teachers to the church and tells us that they should be apt to teach—because God intends that the Bible be explained to ordinary folks who don’t have the time or ability to go as deep as God wants them to go. Christ would not have given teachers to the church if he thought they were not needed.
8. The Bible declares that we should proclaim the whole council of God (Acts 20:27). That implies that there is a coherent unified whole, a body of doctrine, that should be given to the church. It is not easy to find this whole council in a book with 1,500 pages! It’s mainly mental labor. Finding the unified biblical theology that the people need to know takes hard thinking. The Bible is a book, which means that it must be read.
9. An example of how thinking and valuing and acting relate to each other is Matthew 7:7-12.
You can read the rest of the post at the Desiring God blog.
In short, it would seem to understand scripture, apart from the obvious requirement of being a Christian and having the Holy Spirit in one’s life, the basic ingredients are:
It is ironic that the greater our learning, the less these traits are evident.
Yes, David – and it’s been noted many times before that “common sense” is, unfortunately, not very common.