Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
Select a thought to read by choosing a collection, the month, and then the day:
“When the boughs thereof are withered, they shall be broken off. The women come and set them on fire, for it is a people of no understanding. Therefore, He who made them will not have mercy on them, and He who formed them will show them no favor.”
In God’s kingdom, knowledge does not work the way it does in this world. In this world, in most cases, one’s intelligence determines how much knowledge one may obtain, but in God’s kingdom, one’s heart determines how much knowledge one may attain to. Having no understanding in the kingdom of God is always only the result of sin and a rebellious spirit.
Among men, only the arrogant and proud condemn and threaten those who are ignorant. One example of this found in the Bible is when the elders of Israel, envious of their servants’ respect for Jesus, angrily spoke evil against the precious people of Israel because of their supposed ignorance of the customs and the law (Jn. 7:49). But whenever God condemns people for their lack of understanding, it is always because those people had hardened their hearts against the knowledge and understanding that God was trying to feed them. When God made that famous cry through Hosea, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge”, He was not condemning His people for being ignorant of physics or geology; He was broken-hearted that they had rejected His word and chosen the lies of false prophets instead.
In Jesus’ parable of the Sower (Mt. 13), those among the saints who pursued ungodly ways in spite of God’s warnings, were eventually condemned for their lack of understanding; but it was the lack of understanding and embracing the word of God that was the sin, not a lack of understanding earthly things.
Being without understanding can be a deadly fault in the cut-throat warfare of spirits in which we are all engaged. God is constantly offering understanding of eternal things to every soul who will humble himself. Humility is the tuition of God’s university, and no proud man can pay it. That is why, as concerns those without understanding of spiritual things, “He that made them will not have mercy on them, and He that formed them will shew them no favor” and “the women come and set them on fire . . . .” Paul warned the saints that they became proud and paid no more tuition for their place in God’s school, they would be cut off like worthless branches of a tree (Rom. 11:22), and Jesus completed a similar parable by saying, “Unless a man abides in me, he is thrown away like a branch, and it withers, and men gather them and throw them into a fire, and they are burned” (Jn. 15:6).
It is dangerous to be ignorant in God’s kingdom, not merely because of the ignorance but because of the kind of spirit that a man has that prevents him from learning from the Spirit. Anyone who is humble can learn from God. But a proud and rebellious spirit cannot hear and receive what the Spirit is saying.
And if you do not understand this, then repent, and you will.