Learning to Live

By Not Known

Today we start a month-long emphasis on Christian Education Ministry. Christian Education is the teaching and learning of the Bible by the whole church.

Christian Education includes adults as well as youth and children. For this reason, ORPC provides a range of adult Bible-learning activities, including SOCM courses, small groups and Sunday sermons. We also encourage our adults into learning through local theological colleges and organisations such as KYB and BSF. Widespread and effective Bible learning by adults is one of the hallmarks of a strong church.

Let’s think about the learning side of Christian education. We often think of learning as a bookish activity directed at the mind. On this model, Christian education is about storing up Bible knowledge in our head. Thus the good learner is the mentally able one and the scholar is the saint.

But, is education just head learning?

God made us with different aspects and we need learning in all of them. Educators speak of learning that is cognitive, affective and psychomotor. These terms can be translated into the interlinked idea of head, heart and hands. Knowledge learning (head) informs our attitude (heart) and should lead to transformed living (hands)

This linkage is on view in today’s Bible passage (2 Pet. 1: 3- 11). We are told to add a range of qualities to faith in Jesus. Note the order of the list: Knowledge is certainly there (v5) and in a prominent early position, but look at what follows it. There is a range of qualities that show themselves in changed action. It’s almost as though knowledge is a key to these other qualities, but it is not sufficient in itself.

Listen now to the warning about unproductive knowledge:

For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins. (2Pet. 1: 8- 9)

Let’s not fall into the trap of only having head learning about God. Let’s all keep learning about God in our Christian education programmes, but let’s be sure to include learning in heart and hands, so that it is productive.