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Spiritual Understanding

How to acquire Spiritual understanding and how to help others have Spiritual understanding

This is a condensed version of our study on Spiritual Understanding in the Bible using the e-Sword Bible program and five computers networked together as explained in "Gold Miners' Bible Study - Taking Bible Study to a New Level".

The format of this paper is designed so that it can be used for Bible Study by individuals, families or groups. You can copy it and put it into your own word processor program and use it with the e-Sword Bible study we describe, or print it out and study it verse by verse. What is included here is not exhaustive, there is still a lot of gold nuggets for you to find about spiritual understanding.

Spiritual understanding is such a vitally important subject for us as Christians to understand. As you go through this paper you will see how the church has made assumptions about how people acquire spiritual understanding and how to help others to have spiritual understanding that is wrong.

The #1 Key to acquiring Spiritual understanding is not seminary education but asking God for Understanding before you read or study the Bible.

1 Kings 3:9 Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people?

Psalms 119:34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.

Psalms 119:73 Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments.

Psalms 119:125 I am thy servant; give me understanding, that I may know thy testimonies.

Psalms 119:144 The righteousness of thy testimonies is everlasting: give me understanding, and I shall live.

Psalms 119:169 Let my cry come near before thee, O LORD: give me understanding according to thy word.

Exodus 31:3 And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship,

Deuteronomy 4:5 Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the LORD my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it. 6 Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.

Deuteronomy 32:28 For they are a nation void of counsel, neither is there any understanding in them. 29 O that they were wise, that they understood this, that they would consider their latter end!

1 Chronicles 22:12 Only the LORD give thee wisdom and understanding, and give thee charge concerning Israel, that thou mayest keep the law of the LORD thy God.

  1. Wisdom and understanding go hand in hand. It appears that one can not have one without the other.

Job 12:12 With the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding. 13 With him is wisdom and strength, he hath counsel and understanding.

Job 17:4 For thou hast hid their heart from understanding: therefore shalt thou not exalt them.

Job 28:28 And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.

Psalms 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth forever.

Psalms 119:99 I have more understanding than all my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation.

Psalms 119:104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.

  1. Understanding is gained from God's commands.

Psalms 119:130 The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.

Proverbs 1:1-2 The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Israel; 2. To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;

Proverbs 1:5 A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:

Proverbs 2:1-6 Pro 2:1 My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee; 2 So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; 3 Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; 4 If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; 5 Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. 6 For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.

Proverbs 3:3-5 Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: 4 So shalt thou find favor and good understanding in the sight of God and man. 5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

Proverbs 4:1 Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding.

Proverbs 4:5 Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth.

Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

Proverbs 5:1 My son, attend unto my wisdom, and bow thine ear to my understanding:

Proverbs 7:4 Say unto wisdom, Thou art my sister; and call understanding thy kinswoman: 5 That they may keep thee from the strange woman, from the stranger which flattereth with her words.

Proverbs 7:7 And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding,

Proverbs 8:1 Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice?

Proverbs 8:5 O ye simple, understand wisdom: and, ye fools, be ye of an understanding heart. 6 Hear; for I will speak of excellent things; and the opening of my lips shall be right things.

Proverbs 8:14 Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom: I am understanding; I have strength.

Proverbs 9:4 Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him, 5 Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled. 6 Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.

Proverbs 9:9 Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning. 10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.

Proverbs 10:13 In the lips of him that hath understanding wisdom is found: but a rod is for the back of him that is void of understanding.

Proverbs 15:21 Folly is joy to him that is destitute of wisdom: but a man of understanding walketh uprightly.

Proverbs 15:32 He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul: but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding.

Proverbs 16:16 How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!

Proverbs 16:22 Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him that hath it: but the instruction of fools is folly.

Proverbs 17:24 Wisdom is before him that hath understanding; but the eyes of a fool are in the ends of the earth.

Proverbs 17:27 He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit. 28 Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.

Proverbs 18:2 A fool hath no delight in understanding, but that his heart may discover itself.

Proverbs 19:8 He that getteth wisdom loveth his own soul: he that keepeth understanding shall find good.

Proverbs 19:25 Smite a scorner, and the simple will beware: and reprove one that hath understanding, and he will understand knowledge.

Proverbs 20:5 Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out.

Proverbs 21:16 The man that wandereth out of the way of understanding shall remain in the congregation of the dead.

Proverbs 23:23 Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.

Proverbs 24:30 I went by the field of the slothful, and by the vineyard of the man void of understanding; 31 And, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, and nettles had covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down. 32 Then I saw, and considered it well: I looked upon it, and received instruction. 33 Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: 34 So shall thy poverty come as one that traveleth; and thy want as an armed man.

Proverbs 28:11 The rich man is wise in his own conceit; but the poor that hath understanding searcheth him out.

Isaiah 11:2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD; 3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

Isaiah 29:13 Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honor me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: 14 Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.

Isaiah 40:13 Who hath directed the Spirit of the LORD, or being his counselor hath taught him? 14 With whom took he counsel, and who instructed him, and taught him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and showed to him the way of understanding?

Isaiah 40:28 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.

Isaiah 44:13 The carpenter stretcheth out his rule; he marketh it out with a line; he fitteth it with planes, and he marketh it out with the compass, and maketh it after the figure of a man, according to the beauty of a man; that it may remain in the house. 14 He heweth him down cedars, and taketh the cypress and the oak, which he strengtheneth for himself among the trees of the forest: he planteth an ash, and the rain doth nourish it. 15 Then shall it be for a man to burn: for he will take thereof, and warm himself; yea, he kindleth it, and baketh bread; yea, he maketh a god, and worshipeth it; he maketh it a graven image, and falleth down thereto. 16 He burneth part thereof in the fire; with part thereof he eateth flesh; he roasteth roast, and is satisfied: yea, he warmeth himself, and saith, Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire: 17 And the residue thereof he maketh a god, even his graven image: he falleth down unto it, and worshipeth it, and prayeth unto it, and saith, Deliver me; for thou art my god. 18 They have not known nor understood: for he hath shut their eyes, that they cannot see; and their hearts, that they cannot understand. 19 And none considereth in his heart, neither is there knowledge nor understanding to say, I have burned part of it in the fire; yea, also I have baked bread upon the coals thereof; I have roasted flesh, and eaten it: and shall I make the residue thereof an abomination? shall I fall down to the stock of a tree? 20 He feedeth on ashes: a deceived heart hath turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand?

Jeremiah 3:15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.

Jeremiah 4:22 For my people is foolish, they have not known me; they are sottish children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.

Jeremiah 5:21 Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:

Daniel 1:17 As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.

Daniel 1:20 And in all matters of wisdom and understanding, that the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm.

Daniel 2:21 And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding: 22 He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.

Daniel 9:22 And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding.

Daniel 10:1 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed unto Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar; and the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision.

Daniel 11:35 And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end: because it is yet for a time appointed.

Mathew 15:15 Then answered Peter and said unto him, Declare unto us this parable. 16 And Jesus said, Are ye also yet without understanding? 17 Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught?

Mark 7:18 And he saith unto them, Are ye so without understanding also? Do ye not perceive, that whatsoever thing from without entereth into the man, it cannot defile him;

Luke 1:3 It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus, 4 That thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed.

Luke 2:47 And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers.

Luke 24:45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the Scriptures,

Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; 29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:

1 Corinthians 1:17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. 18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. 20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? 21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. 22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

1 Corinthians 14:20 Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men.

Ephesians 1:15 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, 16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers, 17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: 18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, 19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,

Ephesians 4:17 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, 18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: 19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.

Ephesians 5:17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

Colossians 1:9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

Colossians 2:2 That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ; 3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words.

1Timothy 1:5 Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: 6 From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling; 7 Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.

2 Timothy 2:7 Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.

1 John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.




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The Missing Key to Spiritual Maturity

In the fall of 2007, Willow Creek church released the results of their three million dollar research into the effectiveness of their church program and 30 other churches. They were shocked to find that they were not bringing people to spiritual maturity. What they thought would produce spiritual maturity was not. They believed that the more people participated in church programs the greater spiritual maturity it would produce. They found that the amount of involvement in church programs had no correlation with the depth of someone’s spiritual maturity. What makes this mistake so significant is that Willow Creek is a church that has 12,000 churches in their Willow Creek Association, and has taught thousands of pastors how to “do church” to produce church growth. To some degree, Willow Creek Church has influenced how most churches today “do church”. “And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.” (Matthew 15:14)


What is the answer to helping people come to maturity in Christ? Take another look at the Great Commission. The answer is there. We have been focusing on the first part of the commission – evangelism – and have overlooked the second half thinking we know what it is saying. But look again at what Jesus says in giving us the Great Commission: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Matthew 28:19) The missing key to spiritual maturity is teaching others Christ’s commands in the New Testament and teaching them to follow the commands. An excellent subject for Bible study is to take each of Christ’s commands and study them. There is a list of Christ’s commands on this website.



Discipleship, Spiritual Maturity, and Christ’s Commands

Jesus defines a disciple as one who follows His commands. A person who is spiritually mature is one who knows Christ’s teachings in the New Testament and who follows them with all his or her heart, soul, mind and strength. The following passages of Scripture over and over stress the importance of doing what Jesus says to do:

 


Matthew 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. 24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: 25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. 26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: 27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.


Matthew 19:17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? [there is] none good but one, [that is], God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.


John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.


John 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. 22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world? 23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. 24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me.


John 15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love. 11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and [that] your joy might be full. 12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. 13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. 14 Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.


1 Corinthians 7:19 Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God.


2 Corinthians 2:9 For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things.


Galatians 5:7 Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? 8 This persuasion [cometh] not of him that calleth you. 9 A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.


Philippians 2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.


1 Thessalonians 4:1 Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort [you] by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, [so] ye would abound more and more. 2 For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.


1 Timothy 6:14 That thou keep [this] commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ:


Titus 1:16 They profess that they know God; but in works they deny [him], being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.


Hebrews 5:8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; 9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;


James 1:21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. 22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.


See Also

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God is quite clear in many passages of Scripture, and through the example of Jesus, that higher education is not beneficial for pastors. Ignoring all that God has written about the subject, most churches require at least a college degree if not a seminary degree for their pastor.

The Key for Lasting Revival
The way to have a lasting revival seems to be elusive. There have been many revivals in the past, but few are still bearing fruit today. Here is the answer from the Bible on how to have lasting revival.

Totally Rethinking Church Part 1: Stepping 'Out of the Box'
Millions of Christians in the last several years are totally rethinking what ’church’ is and are looking for a deeper relationship with Christ. Much of what defines what the conventional church is, how people are fed spiritually, and how money is spent by the church does not have a specific basis in Scripture.

Totally Rethinking Church Part 2: Sheep - a Key to Understanding God's Design for the Church
Lessons learned from how sheep feed, will totally reshape your understanding of God’s design for the house church and how people are fed spiritually.

Totally Rethinking Church Part 3: A Refreshing Change for Church Leadership
God’s plan for leadership is somewhat different than we are accustomed to.


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Bill Gothard is perhaps the biggest false teacher, sexual predator, hypocrite, and fraud in modern conservative circles.

かぶり物(ベール)についての神話
私は大学時代に、かぶり物(祈りのベール)について調べ始めました。今日もはや、神は(姉妹に)かぶり物を課してはおられないということの論拠を見い出そうとしたのです。実際私は、かぶり物は必要じゃないと思っていました。

Why We Do Not Have a TV
A set of two posters listing the Scriptural reasons why our family does not have a TV. Designed to be printed out so that you can display them in your home as well.

The Key for Lasting Revival
The way to have a lasting revival seems to be elusive. There have been many revivals in the past, but few are still bearing fruit today. Here is the answer from the Bible on how to have lasting revival.

Why You Should Sing in Your House Church
Singing is a very essential part of our worship of God and needs to be a part of every house church. Our desire is to help you as best we can to make a beautiful, joyful sound in singing praises to our God. God loves singing, and loves to hear us sing praises to Him.

Peace in the Old Testament
An overlooked fact in the Old Testament that makes a strong case for Christians not being involved in the military.

Home 'Sunday Schooling'
The answer for the Spiritual education of our children in the home church. In the House church we have the freedom to look at what God’s design is for the spiritual education of the children and implement that rather than feeling like we have to make our home church a small replica of the conventional Sunday school.

Is Music Amoral?
There is a debate among Christians: is music itself amoral? That question, while appropriate to ask, is actually viewing music from the wrong perspective, or more specifically a too limited perspective. It is amazing how much of the debate centers around the opinions of people and very little is based on the Bible.

What is the Best Bible Translation?
There are a whole range of English Bible translations to choose from, and more keep coming out. Which Bible translation is the best one to study, meditate on, and use for our guide in faith and practice?

Music for Children
The music that you and your children sing and listen to is more important than you may realize. The songs that we sing and listen to permanently shape our understanding of who God is.

The Christian Woman's Headcovering: The Style and How Much Should It Cover?
In 1 Corinthians 11, God gives the command that a woman is to cover her head when praying or prophesying and that a man is to have his head uncovered. But should a headcovering be a certain style or color? How much should it cover?

Totally Rethinking Church Part 2: Sheep - a Key to Understanding God's Design for the Church
Lessons learned from how sheep feed, will totally reshape your understanding of God’s design for the house church and how people are fed spiritually.

ATI: Designed Around a False Education "Principle"
The Advanced Training Institute (ATI) curriculum was promoted and sold to pastors and homeschool parents as the best homeschool curriculum in the world. Instead of being the best, it has failed horribly in many ways. The ATI curriculum was produced by Bill Gothard and his Institute in Basic Life Principles and was designed around a false education 'principle' that produces results that are opposite of what Bill Gothard stated that they would be.

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