Yesterday I saw a post on Facebook asking what day Yeshua died on. I replied asking why the person wanted to know that. I said the day doesn’t matter, but what does matter is that he rose. I added we need to stay focused not on data, but on faith and not worry about details.
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I thought my point was clear enough but it wasn’t. I was told by a few people that I shouldn’t restrain someone from asking questions, that knowledge is the beginning of wisdom and I was being ungodly, and one person told me I was too “bossy” and who do I think I am telling people what they should do.
Let me begin with this simple truth: Yes, Virginia…there are stupid questions. And the people that, in my experience, defensively state that I should never stop someone from asking a question, are the ones who are just too lazy to research and find out for themselves what the answers are. They ask questions so they don’t have to think or make their own decision, and those are the sheep that get led astray so easily.
The kind of question I respect is one that starts with “I would like to know (whatever), and have researched it and think this is the answer. Can someone please verify or correct me?”
I believe what is important to know is anything that leads one to a proper understanding of who God is, who the Messiah is, and what we have to do in order to attain salvation through them. Things such as which day Yeshua actually died on, the correct pronunciation of the Tetragrammaton, or which calendar is really correct are not bad questions, but they do not answer what I call the Acid Test question:
“How does this affect my salvation?”
That is the most important question, in my opinion, that anyone can ask, and should be the very first thing we ask ourselves before we delve into the plethora of minutia that is available to us in the Bible.
Hebrews 11:1 says:
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
and Deuteronomy 29:29 says:
“The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.”
If we combine the meaning of those two passages what we end up with is that we will never know everything and we have to faithfully accept that, concentrating only on being obedient to God’s commandments. I would go as far as to say that one needs the strength that comes from humility in being able to say, “I don’t know and it really isn’t that important to me because it won’t affect my salvation.”
Of course, I have heard arguments against what I just wrote, the main two arguments being that it is wrong to stifle someone asking a question and that what I think is not important they know to be absolutely essential.
This ministry is a teaching ministry, and I have nothing against learning, which is evident because right on the home page of this ministry website is a quote from the prophet Hosea which says “my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” I have always been very interested in knowing everything I can about everything. I have always been the “Duty Expert” in every job I have held, and still love to learn. And the most important thing I have learned, which I like to believe came to me through the Holy Spirit, is that I don’t need to know everything.
My point is that the knowledge we need is not detailed minutia but the general knowledge of God, Messiah and the Torah. All we really need to know is
- The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is the one true God ;
- Yeshua is the Messiah he promised to send, whose sacrificial death provides us the means by which we can be forgiven of our sins;
- The Torah is the set of instructions God gave to the world, through the Jewish people, which tells us how to worship him and treat each other and that we are to live according to those instructions as best as we can; and finally
- To daily ask forgiveness for our sins, by means of Yeshua’s sacrifice for us.
If we know those four things, we know all we need to know to be saved.
Everything else may be nice to know stuff, and interesting, no doubt, but not essential. The danger I see, especially with neophyte Believers, in asking too many detailed questions is the potential to become Gnostic, in other words, to think that without this detailed knowledge of numbers or dates or names we won’t be worshiping God properly and that the search for knowing details can often lead us away from being faithful.
Look…go ahead and ask your questions, absolutely try to learn all you can about the Bible, God and Messiah, and especially about what God expects from you. But temper your curiosity with the faithful acceptance that you don’t need to know everything, and always ask God to give you the wisdom to know what is and what isn’t important.
Knowing facts isn’t wisdom, but wisdom is knowing which facts you need to know.
Thank you for being here and please subscribe and share these messages with others to help this ministry grow. I welcome your comments and look forward to the next time we are together.
Until then, L’hitraot and Baruch HaShem!