Judges 13:8-9 8 Manoah prayed to the LORD and said, “Please Lord, let the man of God you sent come again to us and teach us what we should do for the boy who will be born.” 9 God listened to Manoah, and the Angel of God came again to the woman. She was sitting in the field, and her husband Manoah was not with her.
I love to read, and I read a lot. I track the books on read on an app called Good Reads. In 2016 I read 56 books. That was the most books I have ever made it through in a single year. I love to read the Bible as well. I read the Bible again and again in different translations of the Word, so I can see it from fresh perspectives. I am a reader.
Most people are not readers. The number of nonreaders in America has tripled since 1978. Statisticians say that 1/3 of Americans will never read one book after finishing high school. Thanks to reading in bite sizes on blogs and Facebook posts, people are finding it more and more difficult to read a book from beginning to end.
I believe this is having a profound effect on the American Church. We are becoming increasing ignorant of the basics of the Christian faith, the history of God’s people, and how to walk in faith in a fallen world. Thankfully you don’t need to be ignorant of the Scriptures and God’s revealed will to His people. You can break the trends of the day and dive into Scripture. You can read the stories you heard as a kid in Sunday School and discover their depth and breadth as an adult. We live in a society where we have countless free copies of the Word and even free audio Bibles and commentaries and studies online.
To those who come to church discouraged at times due to your lack of knowledge. To those who may be ignorant of the message of God. I want to encourage you to trust in God and to begin a journey of growth into the knowledge and wisdom of God. Be encouraged by the prayer of Manoah of God’s desire to use the ignorant in His plans for His people. God wants to take you where you are and give you the wisdom and grace to impact this world for eternal glory.
No Shame in Ignorance
Manoah was given some pretty miraculous news in Judges 13. His barren was going to have a baby. This wasn’t to be just any baby, but this was a child who would be used by God to govern His people. For this reason, Manoah needed to raise this baby as a Nazarite, but Manoah had a problem. He didn’t know how to raise a Nazarite.
Although many would see Manoah as an ignorant country boy who has never read the Mosaic Laws and couldn’t follow God’s basic statues relating to Nazarites, God saw him in a different light. God saw Manoah as a man who was ideally located to be a thorn in the side of God’s enemies. Manoah was faithful to God and desired to serve Him year after year in the raising for his son. While others might highlight Manoah’s lack of knowledge, God saw the substance of His faith.
Find Wisdom in Prayer
Don’t assume to become an expert in God’s Word in a week, a month, or even a year of reading. It will take years to grow deep in the Truth of God’s Word. You also cannot grow in wisdom alone. Manoah was wise enough to admit his ignorance. He called to God to send the grace and mercy of His angelic messenger again.
When you dive into the Word, partner your reading with times of prayer. Ask God to give you wisdom to understand the difficult points of Scripture. Ask God to help you live out what is before you today in the Word. Ask others to come alongside you in your instruction. Prayer can help you grow in wisdom and knowledge. Don’t be ashamed of your ignorance today, because God takes pleasure in taking those who are lacking and giving them His fullness.