Knowledge – A good atheist spends time getting to know her beliefs. A good Mormon spends time learning about what they believe. In order to defend your beliefs, you have to know facts about your beliefs. Today it seems to be pretty common for people to claim that what they believe doesn’t have to agree with what we believe. What’s true for you may not be true for me. But that’s ok, we can agree to disagree. But in order to know what you believe, you have to know facts about what you believe.
As a Christ follower I can claim that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that He died to take away my sin so that I could experience an eternal and personal relationship with the Creator of the universe. But if I have nothing to base that on, what’s the point? How do I even know it’s true? I have to read and study the Bible, the book that contains the claims of Christianity, so that I can build on the foundation of my doctrinal beliefs.
Reading and studying the Bible happens in several ways. Yesterday I wrote about personal devotion. That is a great way to begin to gather knowledge about what I believe. Church attendance, small group or Bible studies are important as well. The important thing is that you have some kind of systematic instruction in your life. This means consistency. This means orderly, not just a shot in the dark hope I learn something today approach.
Systematic Instruction – Having personal times of devotion is good, but is usually rather unstructured. It is important to pursue some kind of systematic instruction. Whether it be through schooling, or classes offered through a volunteer organization such as the local church. It is essential for followers of Jesus Christ to pursue a systematic study of God’s Word. We can learn a lot on our own. We can learn so much more from those who are gifted in the area of teaching.