Learning How to Learn

I spent several decades as a studious, analytical, intellectual Bible teacher before God, in His mercy, jumped me.

I haven’t left the analytical skills behind, idle, as much as I have downgraded their importance, as Jesus Himself taught (in Mark 12:24), “Jesus answered and said to them, “Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God?”

Jesus speaks to professional analysts of the Book and says that the first reason that they are mistaken is because they don’t *know* the Book. I observe that He sees a difference between studying and analyzing the Book and *knowing* the Book.

But the second source of their error (and, frankly, mine) was a lack of experiential knowledge (εδω) of the power (yep, it’s δύναμις) of God.

It seems like He is saying that their knowledge is getting in the way of knowing the truth. It seems like he’s inviting them to move from studying (the knowledge of the mind, a function of the soul) to an experiential knowledge of both revelation and power (which may, in fact, be a knowledge in my spirit, as it relates to His spirit).

So, if I want to share this new knowledge, how do I do that? Specifically, how do I share knowledge without focusing on the mind (which is what all my schooling ever focused on)? How do I help others to experience the experiential life with God that I myself have stumbled into after decades as a “study the book!” Christian (and to which I shall *never* return!)?

Well for one thing, I’m trying to display my knowledge far less than I used to, and far less than I am trying to say, “Hey, look at this! What do you think of it?” The reality [off the record] is that people learn much better when they discover the truth, often by talking about it, and they can’t talk about it with me unless I listen. When I come at someone with “This is the way it is!” (as analytical statements generally come across), then the common reaction is not to receive what I say, but rather to put up arguments against it.

For another thing, I’m finding that I learn so *much* more my own self when I stop thinking of myself as the expert, when I only listen to people who have more degrees than I have. In the past couple of decades, I’ve run into people who don’t have advanced degrees (some who haven’t even graduated junior high school yet) whose experience of God puts my “knowledge” to shame. I admit, I listen most closely to the people whose experience lines up with their statements, and best of all, to people who have taken the time to know me. But I learn more by listening than I do by talking about what I already know.

We could talk about why it all works this way, but it boils down to Jesus evaluation: “Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God?” And I’ve had to answer, “Yes” every time: Yes, I am mistaken, and yes, that’s why.

I’m learning. :)

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