A flabby mind is no bade of spiritual honor.”
“He kept an on-deck list of books, but unfortunately, it never diminished.”
One thing I have always believed in, though not always practiced, is the idea that we are supposed to study to show ourselves approved. My mercy! If we could get this through to our students today, but with a “ho-hum” attitude it is hard.
I realize that it is speaking of studying and knowing God’s Word, but we are also supposed to do everything as unto the Lord. When I taught Bible classes, the first unit I would teach was “Reading as Worship.” Today, people, not just youth, are so tied and actually devoted to their devices. Call them “smart phones”, but actually they tend to move us toward dependency and not toward study and knowledge.
As far as Christian study is concerned there are really two types: devotional reading and intellectual reading. Devotional reading is usually short and there is not a real purpose to learn something new. The goal of devotional reading is to nourish the soul; to become more aware of God and in developing a relationship. Intellectual reading involves time and study. There are particular purposes or goals which are to gain knowledge and to improve oneself and ministry.
We should also develop professional reading. This enhances our career, plus it should be part of doing everything as unto the Lord. We should seek to become the best we can professionally, and part of that is gaining knowledge about our profession. As a history teacher I would spend the summer reading books on areas in which I felt I was weak. There should also be general reading in which we read to gain knowledge about other subjects. This can also include fictional works because they give insight into our culture.
J.P. Moreland wrote that we say we love God with all our heart, but we often forget the rest of the Scripture. We are to love Him with all of our mind as well. To do this we must get rid of “flabby minds.” Our minds should be strong. However, in all that is read, it is imperative that it be filtered through God’s Word.
For some reason the list of books that I want to read keeps getting longer. I fully understand what Vermillion means when he states that his list of books is never diminished. It’s hard to be bored or in bad company if a person has a quality book under his arm, and yes, I will have to include books on Kindle. The danger in that is that my list grows even larger.
By the way, if you have a good book that you would suggest I should read send the title to me. I’ll check it out and it may get onto my never-ending list.
“Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing [rightly handling and skillfully teaching] the Word of Truth.”
–2 Timothy 2:15 (AMPC)