“We know that we all possess knowledge. Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up. The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know. But the man who loves God is known by God.” – I Corinthians 8:1b-2
“We sometimes tend to think we know all we need to know to answer these kinds of questions – but sometimes our humble hearts can help us more than our proud minds. We never really know enough until we recognize that God alone knows it all.” – (The Message)
Though this particular passage was written with regard to whether or not, and when, it was acceptable to eat food that had been sacrificed to idols, I find that it is a wonderful reminder that all wisdom is His, and seeking Him for answers in the grey areas is far wiser than attempting to speak out based on our own intellect or prior experience.
Another verse that comes to mind is “Everything is permissible for me – but not everything is beneficial. Everything is permissible for me – but I will not be mastered by anything.” – I Corinthians 6:12 Each of us are required to rely on our Redeemer for our own answers, regardless of what is acceptable for another. When we climb on a soapbox and deem something “unclean” for all when it has only been determined a “no” for us personally, we tend to tear down rather than build up in love.
Yes, there are biblical absolutes. What I am speaking of are those things that are not specifically addressed, and are actually determined right or wrong by God for us individually. What might be acceptable for another, may not be okay for me, and vice versa. This is yet another reminder of how desperately we need guidance by God, so that we might walk wisely in Him.
If we love God and seek to know Him, we are known by Him, and granted wisdom and understanding by His Spirit. A humble heart hears and receives that which the Spirit is speaking.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You alone are the source of all wisdom, knowledge and understanding. Please forgive us for the times that we try to take Your place, and somehow think that we know what ought to be done in and by others, rather than relying on You to retain the reigns. Teach us to seek You, so that we may listen and learn. May our own walks in obedience lead others to be built up in love and guided to Your goodness and grace. Amen.