new life fellowship

serving jesus christ the king

No need for gobble-de-gook

June’s Verse
I remember hearing of an elderly lady who heard some great learned man lecturing; afterwards she greeted him enthusiastically, “That was wonderful, I didn’t understand a word of it”!

It’s easy to do—to listen to something that’s over our heads, to feel inadequate, and to assume that it must therefore be wonderful. Sometimes it may well be, sometimes it isn’t and yet we can assume that the fault lies with us, since they must know what they’re talking about.

Perhaps you’ve read stuff from some of the new age variety talking about balancing energies with the universe, or the self-help books advocating claiming your own inner peace, eg. “When I claim my personal power then I can be at peace. When I am at peace I have the strength to claim my power”, or perhaps it’s from religious writers or preachers, and you’ve been left wondering, “I didn’t understand the half of that, but it must have been good”.

It doesn’t just happen when we don’t know much about a subject either. Prof. Scott Armstrong, of Pennsylvania University, did an experiment in which an actor posed as Dr. Myron R. Fox and delivered a lecture of ‘double talk’. He used material from a
Scientific American article, mashed together with contradictory statements, things which didn’t follow logically, and an assortment of jokes and meaningless references to unrelated topics. The audience of professionals reported (through anonymous feedback) that “they found the lecture clear and stimulating.”

Why is it we do that? Why do we assume that if it is to be true or helpful it must be beyond our understanding?

There are issues about which it doesn’t really matter, but the issue where we often listen to unclear or even contradictory messages is that of eternal life—how does a person get to Heaven?

This month’s verse from the calendar answers this question in part. Many followers were abandoning Jesus, and he asks his disciples if they are going to go too, they reply:

“Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” – John 6:68

These men knew that there was one place to get the answer; they knew that it was from Jesus. They knew that listening to his words, understanding them and trusting them was the key to eternal life. It’s not something to sub-contract out to preachers or gurus of whatever stripe, we need to go to Jesus, and to his words. Perhaps that’s why God has given us four accounts of Jesus’ life and words in the Bible. Let me encourage you to read them. It is to him that we must go, not to people who may impress us with their many words.