#190 (7/29/18 morning)

(Source of material:  Rev. B.R. Hicks)

Please read 2Peter 3:18.  The author instructs the reader to grow in both grace and knowledge.  Knowledge is something not known previously.  What the Christian does with knowledge after receiving it is important.  The tendency is to discard knowledge when it is not understood.  In this lesson, two characters in the Bible will be contrasted.  The first, Jacob, protected knowledge he didn't understand.  The second, Jeroboam, cast knowledge behind his back and forgot it.  

Let's start with Jacob.  Please read Genesis 37:5-10.  This passage of scripture involves Joseph telling his parents and his brothers about two dreams.  God had a plan for Joseph's life but to fulfill it Joseph could not stay where he was at.  It ended with his brothers and his parents bowing down to him but it started with a dark, stinky pit.  Then the plan took him as a slave to a foreign land.  Additionally, the plan led him to be falsely accused and cast into prison.  Joseph was willing to endure all hardship that the plan executed in his life.  Because of the dreams, he was able to walk through whatever the plan gave him, knowing someday that he would be a ruler that people bowed down to.  Like Joseph, the believer has been given a vision of a plan, a New City that awaits at the end of the journey.  Whatever pit, slavery, false accusation or prison the believer must endure is part of the plan.  Notice is verse 11, despite showing Joseph strong disapproval, Jacob "observed" the saying.  This means to guard, heed, protect, hedge with thorns. He didn't cast this new knowledge away.  He hid it in his heart and reverenced it.  

Jeroboam is another story.  Please read I Kings 14:1-9.  Ahijah told Jeroboam earlier that the LORD had given him 10 tribes of Israel.  The remaining two would be given to Rehoboam, Solomon's son, which would begin the kingdom of Judah (also including Benjamin).  Notice at the end of verse 9, Jeroboam is excoriated by Ahijah for casting the LORD behind his back, or, throwing away knowledge.  This is the same "casting behind his back" that is referred to in Isaiah 39:17.  God casts our sin behind his back and remembers it no more.  Jeroboam cast knowledge behind his back and forgot about it.  In reality, he did to God what God does with sin.  

Knowledge comes, as in the case of Joseph, to change the enviroment.  His dreams (knowledge) produced a change, a new set of circumstances, a new enviroment.  Joseph did not cast away this knowledge so he could maintain his comfort zone.  He protected and guarded it; hedged it about with thorns.  From the pit to the throne of Pharoah he "observed" his dreams, his knowledge.  He never threw away his dreams; he never forgot them.  Knowledge comes in two forms:  theory and experience.  Joseph not only clung to the theory, but also his experiences all along the journey to the throne of Pharoah.  Christians are admonished to "observe" the theory as well as the experiences all the way to the New City!