Knowledge – BT5
The world’s philosophy, gnosis information, and wisdom is rubbish!
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Philosophia is the love for wisdom, zeal for or skill in any art or science, or any branch of gnosis info-knowledge. It may be used here in Colossians 2:8 of the theosophy or sophistry of certain Jewish-Christian ascetics, which busied themselves with refined and speculative inquiries into the nature and classes of angels/spirits, into the ritual of the Mosaic Law, and into the regulations of Jewish tradition respecting practical life. In addition, the Gnostic-like heresy at Colossae would undoubtedly have also been regarded by Paul as an “elementary, abc-like stoicheion teaching” at best because of their “puffed-up” pride in acquisition of gnosis info-knowledge and “mysteries” (a). However, such Jewish or Gentile gnosis didn’t even come close to genuinely, experientially, relationally epiginosko knowing the mystery of God that is Christ (b), which is the unconditional-love of Christ that surpasses gnosis info-knowledge (c). The former, not the latter, is what the whole Church is to grow up to attain (d)! Yet much of the Church has made dogma, doctrine, and theology its main quest! <Notes> a) thus the Mystery Religions, b) Colossians 2:2; 1 Corinthians 2:2; 2 Corinthians 4:6, 10:5; Philippians 3:8, c) Ephesians 3:19, d) Ephesians 4:13.
Philosophy is definitely not the genuine, experiental, relational epignosis knowledge of The Truth that is consistent with godliness (a), the epignosis knowledge of every good thing that is IN US (b) for the sake of Christ (c), so we can be effective and fruitful in the epignosis knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” (d), so we can escape the defilements of the world through the epignosis knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (e), so we can grow in unconditional-favor-of-grace and epignosis knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (f), recognizing that the Son of God came to give us dianoia understanding (g), so that we may epignosko know Him, the true [one], and we are IN Him, the true [one], in His Son Jesus Christ (i).” The gnosis info-knowledge of religion, whether the OT religion of the priests, scribes, Pharisees, and Sadducees, or Gentile religions and philosophies, is simply completely different-in-kind than the New (a) Covenant knowing of God through Christ. <Notes> a) Titus 1:1, b) by the Spirit, c) Philemon 1:6, d) 2 Peter 1:8, e) 2 Peter 2:20, f) 2 Peter 3:18, g) dianoia: as a faculty for deep thinking, imagination, feeling, and desiring, h) and we are in Him who is true, i) 1 John 5:20, j) chadash, kainos: fresh, completely different-in-kind, unprecedented, sharing nothing with its predecessors, unique, and superior.
1 Corinthians 1:17-31 says: “For Christ did not send me to water-baptize, but to preach the gospel, absolutely in fact not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect. For the logos gospel message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the enabling-power of God. For it is written: ‘I will destroy the sophia wisdom of the wise, and bring to nothing the sunesis connect-the-dots understanding of the understanding ones.’ Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the sophia wisdom of this world? For since, in the wisdom of/belonging-to God, the world through [human] sophia wisdom did absolutely in fact not experientially, relationally ginosko know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the logos gospel message preached to save those who have trusting-relying-faith. For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after sophia wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the enabling-power of God and the sophia wisdom of/belonging-to God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise kata down-from/according-to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty (c) and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, that no flesh should glory/boast in His presence. But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us sophia wisdom from God – and righteousness and sanctification and redemption – that, as it is written, ‘He who glories, let him glory in Yahweh.'”
Here we see the “least among you” are the “weak things of the world” and “the base things of the world” and “the things which are despised” by the world – these God “has chosen” first before “the greatest among them” that are “the things which are mighty” that are the so-called “wise and noble.” Why? So that NOBODY will be able to boast before God of any self-importance! Also, we see Paul saying he didn’t come with a “words-of-wisdom” message like all the others. This would be appealing to their trusting-relying-faith in his knowledge. We see below from 1 Corinthians 2:1, 13 that Paul wants them to instead have trusting-relying-faith in the Holy Spirit that confirms the message with demonstrable signs & wonders, which is exactly the “enabling-power of God” and “enabling-power of the cross” Paul speaks of in 1 Corinthians 1:17-18.
Paul says in 1 Corinthians 2:1-6, “And brethren, when I came to you, I absolutely in fact did not come with excellence of speech or of sophia wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. For I determined absolutely in fact not to experientially, relationally ginosko know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching were absolutely in fact not with persuasive words of human sophia wisdom, but in demonstration/manifestation of the [Holy] Spirit and/coupled of [His] enabling-power, that your trusting-relying-faith should absolutely in possibility NOT be in the sophia wisdom of men but in the enabling-power of God. However, we [do] speak sophia wisdom among those who are mature, yet absolutely in fact not the sophia wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing.”
This is a direct slam against the great Jewish leaders and teachers of Paul’s day that were trained as rabbis to endlessly debate the Torah Law of conditional-favor [as Paul had been trained to do], but also obviously a slam against Greek philosophy, logic, and rational-thought sciences that stem from the Greeks and their list of great teachers and debaters, which produced nothing but human-based gnosis info-knowledge. Paul considered his rabbinic training a complete loss or detriment compared to the surpassing excellency of the gnosis info-knowledge of/belonging to Christ Jesus (a), and so now he is dedicated to destroying such arguments against Christ (b). Will we be like them, looking for knowledge in all the wrong places? <Notes> a) Philippians 3:8, b) 2 Corinthians 10:5.
As Christian musicians, are we looking for the knowledge of God in all the wrong places, the same places that all religions do – sacred books, even scripture? That’s the stoicheion abc’s common to them all! “Elementary, my dear Watson,” Sherlock Holmes would say! All it ever did for anybody was “puff up” those who could “diagnose” God and divide them from those who couldn’t. But the Lord has rejected the “wise and understanding ones” and instead reveals Himself and His “secret knowledge” to the uneducated little children and the other “least among them.” If the “unconditional-love of Christ surpasses all gnosis informational-knowledge,” is must by definition not be “diagnosable” – it must be experienced through actual relationship with Christ! Everything else is given to us by the Spirit’s enabling-power through this intimate connection with God.
This certainly will frustrate the book-worms, philosophers, and debaters! If our message is just writings or words, we really are no different than all the others, asking people to put their faith in writings and/or our explanation of them. Paul didn’t come with a Sola Scriptura or “word-only” gospel – but with God’s confirming power, so that people would place their faith in God instead!