Friday, October 30, 2009

Lifetime Learning

I spent today in an eight hour long seminar: "Continuing Professional Education" (CPE) in accounting. Fortunately for me, this one was not as boring as so many of them are. As a CPA I am required to take 40 hours of CPE a year. My profession believes that learning does not end with college graduation, or passing the CPA exam. Learning is a lifetime endeavor, a life long effort - at least for one's professional lifetime.

Being a disciple of Jesus is also a journey of lifetime learning. We never arrive, never graduate, and never quit studying and taking tests. Not this side of eternity anyway, and probably not on the other side either. We never become masters - there is only one Master- but can at best only hope to be journeymen and trained apprentices.

When I am 90 years old, if the Lord tarries and grants me long life, I hope that I am still reading the Bible, still learning, still seeking knowledge. No man or woman can ever know enough about the Truth, and the One who is Truth.

But we must also remember that it is not enough to just learn information and facts about Theology and the Bible. This is a special temptation to me- one that I must constantly be on the guard against. Knowledge that is not translated into belief, obedience and action is no true knowledge, and may be just bringing more condemnation upon ones self.

As the Apostle James said: But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. (James 1:22-25 ESV).

If not very careful, we could (I could) easily become like those described by Paul in 2 Timothy 3:7: "always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth."

May Jesus make me into a lifetime learner- a disciple - and not just a hearer but also a doer. Amen.