James H. Bailey, Sr.

Ignorance is a lack of knowledge. In Romans 10:1-3, Paul wrote, "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God." Note God's requirement of men in order to be saved.

Zeal must be according to knowledge. The religious world is filled with the knowledge of men. God's Word warns man to follow that which is right. "But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrine the commandments of men." Israel was lost because they were not following God's Word. Romans 10:1. The expression "might be saved" indicates they were in a lost state.

Salvation is dependent upon the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:3-4 teaches, "For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth." Faiths of men lead people away from the truth. Ignorance of God's Word of truth keeps one in a lost condition.

God wants his Word of truth handled rightfully. 2 Timothy 2:15 teaches us, "Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." When we handle God's Word in the right manner, we do not need to be ashamed.

Acts 3:13-19 teaches, "The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go. But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses. And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all. And now, brethren, I wot (know) that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers. But those things, which God before had showed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled. Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;"

Peter said they did this in ignorance. In verse 19, they were taught that they could repent of it and be converted. Thus, anyone in ignorance of truth can repent and be converted from their error.

Ephesians 4:17-18 teaches, "This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:" The Gentiles walked in error. Their understanding was darkened. They were alienated from God through ignorance, and they were blinded from truth.

Let each of us examine ourselves carefully to see whether we might be in ignorance of truth. Pleasant View Towers, 1205 9th. St., Box 110, Vienna, WV 26105.


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