Knowledge refers to knowing the truth or understanding the actual state of affairs in the world, which is God’s creation that operates under His rule, and is dependent on Him; Knowledge involves true belief in God.
1) First, to access truth, man must submit to what God has revealed through His creation and through Scripture
2) Knowledge is the possession of all people because God revealed it to them in such a way that they know Him in knowing His world (Ps. 19:1–6; Rom. 1:18–25). The foundation of coming to knowledge of the truth is the fact that knowledge has already been granted; man must already know (and he does in fact already know).
3) However, the knowledge of God that people possess in knowing His creation is darkened because of the sin of attempted autonomy, rebellion, and insubordination (they are “darkened in their understanding,” Eph. 4:18). They suppress what they know of the world and, through it, of God (Rom. 1:18). What they know because of God’s revelation granting them knowledge (knowledge that they clearly perceive, Rom. 1:20), they do not understand because they have exchanged the truth of God for a lie (Rom. 1:23). What they know is now under a cloud of utter darkness.
4) Therefore, if man is going to know anything in truth he must submit to what he knows but denies. Before the fall, knowledge of the world and of did not have the encumbrance of insubordination (rebellion and willful disobedience). Since the fall, rebellion blocks man’s knowledge of the world and of God through it.
Therefore, the great problem of knowledge is not human fallibility but human culpability, because sinful man suppresses what he knows of God and the world by God’s gift. The problem is not some abstract intellectual deficiency. Instead, the problem is ethical; it is a concrete personal unwillingness to submit to God. Hence, human disobedience breaks the circle of knowledge, and man seeks to build a house of knowledge on the foundation of his denial, denying that he knows God and His world by His gift in every act of human discovery.
Submission to God is necessary for true knowledge, and when it is present, true knowledge is present (it is thus also sufficient for knowing properly and truly). This is the case for the beginning of knowledge but not for growing in it. For growth in knowledge, submission is necessary but not sufficient because other things are also necessary such as: critical thinking, and open-minded humility.
A Christian view of coming to true knowledge comes to expression in Scripture when we consider the following passages: 1 Timothy 6:3–5, Colossians 2:1–10, 1 Corinthians 13:1–2, Romans 1:18, Matthew 6:22–23, and 1 Corinthians 2:14.[i]
[i] Ostella, R. (2007). Epistemic Circularity, Christian Virtue, and Truth. In R. A. Morey (Ed.), Journal of Biblical Apologetics: Volume 10 (R. A. Morey, Ed.) (53). Orange, CA: California Biblical University and Seminary.
Published on Wednesday, October 31, 2012 @ 4:15 AM CDT