I. Introduction: The goal of this lesson is to help us understand that examining all things before reaching a conclusion is right (Romans 12:1-2).
A. There are many reasons people have “religious beliefs” that are not rooted in true seeking (note a few and why they are misguided)…
- Emotions dangerously lead some people (Jeremiah 17:9-10).
- The need for a false sense of security lead some (Micah 3:9-12).
- Real calamity (Ecclesiastes 9:11-12) can cause people to seek (i.e. Israel of old; Hosea 4:15).
- To socialize carnally; which is not spiritual at all (Romans 14:17 and Ephesians 4:15-16).
- Because of human traditions that have become or were formed by false “religious” conclusions (Mark 7:1-13 and Colossians 2:4-8).
- On the other hand, there have been times when no one was seeking (Psalms 53:1-3). But, we [saints]…
- Even without a law or knowledge of a spiritual law, man has a conscience and a knowledge of right or wrong (Romans 2:12-16).
- Some knowledge is natural (I Corinthians 11:14-15).
- Creation is His testimony (Psalms 19:1-7).
II. Body: As True Seekers; Love God With Our Intellect (Mark 12:28-34).
A. Examining the word translated “mind” (Mark 12:30)…
- Defined: “deep thought, properly, the faculty (mind or its disposition), by implication, its exercise: — imagination, mind, understanding. The mind as a faculty of understanding, feeling, desiring; understanding; mind, i.e. spirit, way of thinking and feeling; thoughts, either good or bad” (Strong’s # 1271).
- Other ways this word is translated: Luke 1:51 [imagination], Ephesians 1:18 [understanding], Ephesians 4:18 [understanding], and I John 5:20 [understanding].
- Contextually, the scribe understood that Jesus meant “understanding” (Mark 12:32-33).
- Do you KNOW and are you FULLY persuaded [convinced] (II Timothy 1:8-12)?
- Some express conviction, but still have doubts (John 6:66-69, John 16:30-32, and Matthew 28:17).
- Don’t use; “For we walk by faith, not by sight” (II Corinthians 5:7) as some marching cry to justify blind following…
- Research, make observations, ask questions (John 5:30-47, John 10:22-38, and I Corinthians 15:1-11).
- Form an initial finding that you will not conclude with until you have thoroughly tested it (John 1:19-29; cf. Luke 7:11-23).
- Honestly scrutinize your initial findings (Matthew 17:1-13 and I Corinthians 10:15) and don’t feel the need to hide it (John 18:20 and Acts 26:22-29).
- Test it out (I Thessalonians 5:21) without fearing the scrutiny others may bring to the matter (I Corinthians 14:29; 14:37).
- Adjust your initial findings based upon what you have found through testing them out (Luke 24:13-35).
- Does everything add up to an unmistakable conclusion with no other possible conclusion (example of a failure; John 21:20-23)?
- When you form that final conclusion, even if your initial findings were right, are you now SURE (John 4:1-42)?
III. Conclusion: Don’t fear putting things to the test (Ephesians 5:10)!
© 1999-2019 Brian A. Yeager