October 7, 2011

“The story of learning doesn’t tell us all about who we are, but the story of learning certainly tells us a lot and it’s a powerful story” Dr. Arn Froese

I was sitting here working on a research paper on Thomas Aquinas, going through the boat load of information on Church Histories greatest thinkers, getting a headache, when I started thinking to myself “Why do I do this?” Why do I get up and go to class everyday so I can get more homework, headaches and reading? Didn’t Solomon have a point when he wrote “Meaningless, meaningless, everything is meaningless” and when he was ranting about everything under the sun.

 It’s a good question I suppose, to ask why one would pursue and education, of course, if it wasn’t for an education Thomas Aquinas couldn’t have been the greatest thinking in Church History. If it wasn’t for education we wouldn’t have gone to the moon, been able to read and even as I type this I realize that without education I couldn’t possibly be writing this with cohesion and you wouldn’t be able to understand it without education.

But what is the point? As a ministry major I find myself confronted by this apathetic question. What is the point of pursuing education? Well if I were to rush into Ministry without knowing how to minister it wouldn’t end well for me. Most great evangelists and preachers didn’t get that way without having some understanding of hermenuetics if they did the result might actually be disastrous, instead of using Exegetical (taking away from the text) principles they may use Eisegesis (inserting ones own meaning onto the text) principles which are very different.

The same is true in Psychology! How can one become a psychologist without even the basic principles and knowledge of human behavior that make up this field. This is true of Mathematics, Sciences, Communications and any other field you can think of.

In a conversation I had with Roy Stuckey, author of the book Transapparent: A Novel for Three Dimensional Christians. I learned that most people quit learning once they leave College, at least quit learning academically. He encouraged me to continue to pursue education, to keep learning beyond the age of thirty even if it kills me. This is good advice but again why must we learn?

Based on what I’ve stated above my question is now just the opposite! Why wouldn’t we learn? Why wouldn’t we want to continue our education? Why wouldn’t we want to (if God calls us) go all the way to get out PhD’s and Doctorate’s of Ministry?

Just think, if Aristotle, Plato, Sacrates, Augustine, Leo the Great, Athenaseas, St. Benedict, St. Thomas Aquinas, John Wesley, John Calvin and all the great Scholastic thinkers had stopped their education what would the world be like? Calvin and Wesley never would have formed their doctrines, Augustine never would have been converted, Plato would be a dog on a cartoon and Aristotle and Socrates would never have been remembered by the next generations.

To keep growing and learning, to keep getting a better education and to move up, or if you practice biblical servant leadership, move down. I want to encourage you put education as a priority, to continue to learn and experience learning. God has gifted us with minds that we might use them to bring glory to Him and filling them with knowledge that we can use as a weapon for His kingdom.

Yes education is meaningless when compared to eternity, it’s something we do while we are on earth, that part Solomon had right. However God gave men the ability to think and thanks to men who have thought we now have historical giants that we can stand on the shoulders of to see the whole of God’s plan for humanity. Continue my friends to learn, continue my friends to discover, continue my friends to gain knowledge and wisdom.

For education exists because God made man to think and because of that we are given wisdom.

        to give prudence to the simple,
knowledge and discretion to the youth—
Let the wise hear and increase in learning,
and the one who understands obtain guidance,
(Proverbs 1:4-5 ESV)

God Bless You
Jon Faulkner
10:31 Ministries