Sermon- Are You Willfully Ignorant
For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.
Tonight I want to speak to you on the subject of willful ignorance. Dr Ken Hovind has said that being willfully ignorant is being dumb on purpose. I want to pose to you this question for you to consider, Are you being willfully ignorant? It is a serious question and I realize it is one that has the potential to make people mad when they do not want to squarely face the question. As a matter of fact the more upset you initially feel about me asking the question, the greatly the likelihood you need to face the question and answer it.
Personally I hate being wrong, and I hate finding out I have been fooled into believing something that is not true. But I have had that happen in my lifetime. In fact I have just recently had to confront a distortion of history that I had believed without thinking the matter through. As a person who has studied history and had the facts, if I had thought a bit more I would have seen through the ruse and even understood why it was out there. As a Christian whose work is focused on telling the truth about things that are distorted and seeking to honor the Lord Jesus Christ through exposing lies, being misled myself is a source of embarrassment and shame wherever it might occur. To continue to hold on to a belief or an idea after the truth has been exposed should be a real embarrassment to any believer. But there are many who do not want to be confused with facts, their mind is made up. They would rather be ignorant of the facts than to change. They want to be dumb on purpose.
When I began teaching my last round of doctrine classes a few semesters back, I opened up with a pretest.
a. Most of the people in the class failed it. I had told them that it did not count for a grade,
b. I wanted them to discover how much they did not know.
c. The test I used was adapted from, watered down if you will, from a test given in the A- Beka curriculum to sixth grade students for a grade.
Then I began my lectures in doctrines by demonstrating how most people have fallen into the mode of evolutionary thinking without even knowing it. After that introduction into Bible doctrines I lost several students. I believe that the reason they left my class was they did not want to confront these things really.
a. They just wanted to have their heads opened up and knowledge poured into them.
b. We have a passive kind of belief system these days too. I want to believe but I do not want that belief to cost me anything, and I do not want the knowledge that I garner to require anything of me.
Solomon remarked there is sorrow in knowledge. I will give you three reasons there is sorrow in knowledge.
1. There is sorrow in knowledge because it brings us into a confrontation with ourselves. We have to admit when we have garnered knowledge how much we have failed and fallen short of the glory of God 1..
2. There is also a sorrow in knowledge because we must admit how little it is that we actually do know. When we come to a point where we have some real knowledge we discover how much we have to learn.
3. There is sorrow in knowledge because we sometimes find that we have to surrender our preconceived beliefs that were wrong.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to sorrow. One of the ways you will experience sorrow in knowledge, is when you see how many of your fellow believers are content to continue in ignorance even when that ignorance is contributing to the destruction of Christianity in their country.
For instance, if I were to make it a test today about how many people know that the major colleges in our country were all founded for the primary purpose of fitting young men for the ministry, I believe that not many people would know that. They certainly would not know which ones were established primarily for which denominations. They would not know that.
Did you know that I can show you how the acceptance of corrupt Bibles got into the Southern Baptist Convention? It came to us through a man named A.T. Robertson. How many of you have ever heard of him? Before churches quit having Training Union because people were not willing to invest any time in learning how to serve God, he was mentioned quite a lot.
Robertson's error can be traced directly back to a man named B.B. Warfield who went wrong when he went to Europe to be corrupted by the French and British theologians. He set up shop at Princeton University and the influence of his teaching spread throughout all the mainline denominations including the Southern Baptists.
Did you know how most of the children got an education in the early days of this country? They were either home schooled or they were educated in the local church, quite often by the most highly educated man in the town, the local pastor. Later on the little red schoolhouse came into being. It was often a one-room affair. People often times went for their higher education to some place that was a little distance from home, but sometimes their higher education consisted of reading books after a hard days work was done. One of the men who got an education that way was named Abraham Lincoln.
A Methodist friend of mine, now deceased, Mrs. Waddell who was a retired school teacher in Bremen, began her journey of higher education by going to Mt Zion which had a Christian preparatory school in those days. (Maybe that was about ten miles from her home. So she did not commute every day. She boarded and came home for visits.) Later she went for more advanced training to what was then far off Villa Rica where there was a center of higher learning established. (That was a day to a day and half journey from Bremen in those days. Now we say, that is only about 27 miles. Hit the interstate and you are there in fifteen minutes.)
The little red schoolhouse had small classes that had several grades in them. The children did just fine socially. I remember when large classes were a complaint about public school. Now people complain because Christian schools are often small.
What Christian schools do academically is get children back to the basics. You do not find a math question in a Christian school that asks if you have two pieces of fruit and Sally has three pieces of fruit how do you feel about it?
In Christian schools pledges are said. Children are taught a lot of things like love of country, honoring parents and listening to teaches, and giving their hearts and minds to God. Somebody thinks you cannot do those things in public schools. That is why we have things happening like what occurred at Columbine where so many were massacred. Before death entered in God was thrown out. The man behind values free education lives right outside of that town. He does not send his children to public school.
It is amazing how much we do not know. For instance most people do not know that the very person the people who are trying to destroy the constitution love to quote, Thomas Jefferson, is the man who introduced a bill into the Congress that it should would pay for the printing and distribution of Bibles into the wilderness areas.
They do not know that the man accused of being the least religious man in the founding of our country, Benjamin Franklin, credited the direct intervention of God into the affairs of men with bringing this country into being. Did you know that Ben Franklin is the reason that the Congress of the United States still opens in prayer to this day?
By the way, has it ever occurred to you that the reason Benjamin Franklin could print a newspaper and Poor Richard's Almanac, and serve as Postmaster because the society of the American Revolution was literate? That is not true of the society today, because most people who have graduated from the modern public school system have trouble reading a paper. But I guess that is alright because quite frankly most of the people writing for the newspapers cannot write.
Many of the arguments being thrown against the Bill of Rights today were answered by the very men who gave those things to us. You see, people who want to destroy America to work to lose the knowledge held by the Christians within it. They had to wait till Americans got so dumbed down that they did not know these things before they could attack us.
Public school teachers have a problem. Even if they are trying to be good and faithful they are being betrayed by the literature made available to them. When I worked for Bremen I pointed out flaws in literature being used and all I got for my efforts was shrugged shoulders.
Harry Potter material, which is witchcraft, has invaded the local schools and is being used and promoted. When I say anything about it the usual response I get is I donít see anything wrong with it. My response to that is if you would read your Bible more and spend some time on your knees in genuine contrition before God you would know better. It is the sin of witchcraft and the Bible says thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. I guess God did not say thou shalt not have it in the public schools because He expected His people to have more sense.
If I were to ask how many people read there Bible every day, I wonder how many hands would go up? I think most of the people who would say they do would be lying. I do not read my Bible every day because I miss some days when my schedule is disrupted
or I am sick. I could ask how many people pray every day? I do not mean little "polly want a cracker" prayers, but really get down and agonize with God. I know most people do not do that. Why? When people start praying like that their life starts reflecting it. Prayer brings sorrow because prayer brings knowledge. It brings us into a confrontation with ourselves and we start seeing ourselves the way God sees us.
A man told me a while back that he did not see any use in studying prophecy. I then knew that here was a man who did not study his Bible. Why? The Bible is full of prophecy. How can you read and study the Bible, which is full of prophecy, and not have an interest in prophecy? I have been to meetings where some man of God came and chairs were put in the aisles to be able to seat those who came. Now we could not do that because we are more afraid of the fire warden than we are of God.
We are so afraid of fire that if the air conditioning breaks, we are likely to call of the meeting.
I remember being in meetings down in South Georgia where the windows were opened and people set outside and some in cars near the building to hear a bull voiced preacher who did not need any microphone unfold the word of God. We had funeral home fans and we set tightly packed together and sweated on each other, but we were not in any hurry for the meeting to end, we came there to learn something, let the chips fall where they may. People got saved in meetings like that. Not one of them burned down even though the heat got pretty high. One of the things about a hot meeting like that is when the preacher preaches hell hot, the people know they do not want to go there.
Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better. The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth. It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:3-5
People do not want sorrow, but they need it. Sorrow always comes before repentance. When the Children of Israel see the Lord Jesus Christ revealed they are going to mourn for the rejection of Him that happened so long ago. That is what my Bible says and that is prophecy. Like every other prophecy in my King James Bible you can take it to the bank. Of course if you are reading something else that prophecy might have been changed or taken out thanks to people who hate the true Word of God.
Christians need some repentance. American Christians need a lot of repentance for what they have let invade their world.
I know I need repentance. As I read the Word of God and sorrow I find more and more about me I do not like. I want to get those things conformed to the image of Christ.
My Bible tells me Jesus is coming again real soon, and when He comes I want to have everything right and be working to serve Him. I have to read my Bible and I have to pray so I can find out what the Lord wants me to do.
I think if we as a church had some repentance our Sunday Schools would not have been in decline for three years running and our teachers would be arriving early to get ready to teach instead of late as is frequently the case. I think if we as a church had some repentance our pastor would be preaching to a few new fresh faces every Sunday, because we would be inviting more folks to church.
I think if we had some repentance we would be changing our literature and getting that old ungodly NIV literature out of our Sunday School classes. You see when you have knowledge you know that the same people who own the NIV copyrights also own printing operations that are turning out Occult and Satanic literature. If they were interested in the true word of God they would not be doing that.
One of the things about repentance is I know I need to repent of my failing you as a minister of the Gospel. I know I have. If I were a better man of God you would trust me more and look into the things I have been warning about. A lot of people think I am just a lot of noise. I know that. They should study some of the men of the Bible. One walked around naked for three years to make his point, another ate dung, and another married a whore. That makes me pretty mild by comparison.
I am in the process right now of earnestly seeking after God to see what it is I must do to serve you and my pastor best. I am willing to do anything it takes so that I can serve my Lord Jesus Christ and be what I need to be for you. I love you so much that if the Lord were to say that the price for doing and being what you need me to do and be is my death, I would give it gladly. I tell you the truth because I love you, and want you to be all God would have you to be.
I am willing to cause you sorrow and make you mad at me if that is what is needed so that we might rejoice when God blesses.
My Bible tells me that Jesus is coming soon. If He does not come soon enough, it will not be long until I stand before Him even so. It will not be long before you do so either. That should be the time when our sorrow is turned into joy. Isn't it better to sorrow in this world to rejoice before the throne of God than to live in blissful ignorance in this world to sorrow before the throne of God?
My Bible tells me that those who go forth with tears bearing the precious seed of the Gospel message are the same ones who come again with rejoicing bringing a precious harvest of souls with them. If knowledge brings sorrow and knowledge correctly applied is wisdom, we need more knowledge and we need more sorrow, because we need to be right with God and we need to win souls for Jesus.
I pray to be this kind of man, and I pray for those I love in the household of faith that they may desire to be that kind of a person also.
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Buchanan, Georgia 30113