We who preach and write, do so in a manner different from which the Scriptures have been written. We write while we make progress. We learn something new every day. We speak as we still knock for understanding...If anyone criticizes me when I have said what is right, he does me an injustice. But I would be more angry with the one who praises me and takes what I have written for Gospel truth than I would be with the one who criticizes me unfairly. -Augustine

Extra, Extra, Read All about It! (Part 2)

Knowing what to do can give a person the edge. Not knowing what to do can get you elected to Congress and even the presidency! Why do we have so many inept people in government today? Why is it so difficult to spend less than one generates in income? Can a nation really get out of trillions of dollars of debt when it now takes three years to produce what used to take one year?

I believe that the answer is yes. But a new type of leader must rise; a leader who possesses a certain quality of understanding; the kind of leader that we read about in I Chronicles 12: “Of Issachar,” the Scripture records, “men who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do . . .”

The word understanding in the Hebrew means “to have insight or to act with prudence.” There is obviously both insight and prudence missing not only in government today, but in our schools, universities, and sadly, in many of our churches. Over the past thirty years, whenever I visited a church, I would read the plaque that contained the history of the church’s leadership. As I viewed these historical etchings, there was one striking similarity and alarming trend. In the early 1900’s–until the 1960’s–most of the clergy had earned doctorates.The leadership in our early churches were men who studied the Word–they were readers. Now don’t misunderstand. There were plenty of very educated but liberal clergy in those days. But sadly, today, there is an absence of depth–we have a show without substance.

So what does it take to possess the kind of understanding that the men of Issachar possessed? Abraham Lincoln said, “The things I want to know are in books; my best friend is the man who will get me a book I have not read.” Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “If we encounter a man of rare intellect we should ask him what books he reads.” A.W. Tozer wrote, that “Next to the Holy Scriptures, the greatest aide to the life of faith may be Christian biographies.” Henry David Thoreau gave this advice, “Read only the best books first, lest there not be time to read them all.”

Leaders are readers. And to a large extent, our present leadership is reflecting the influence of the books they’ve read–or not read! If you want to possess an understanding of our times, it’s available for all. “For the LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding . . .” (Proverbs 2:6).

Published in: on August 13, 2011 at 12:33 am  Leave a Comment  

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