Usually when we think of the word “STUPID” we think of someone who is dull, slow in understanding and not very smart. In this chapter we want to think about those who are “SPIRITUALLY STUPID”--those who are spiritually dull because of their own unbelief and disobedience (they do not believe what God says and they do not do what God says). Jesus described such people in Matthew 13:13: "because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they _________________________." And in Matthew 13:15 it says “their ears are __________ of hearing, and their eyes they have _______________________."
These are people who do not see because they do not want to see. They do not understand because they refuse to understand. We should not pity these people or feel sorry for them or sympathize with them because they have no one to blame for their stupidity but THEMSELVES! They have made themselves stupid! It is not because they have a low IQ (intelligence quotient). It is not because they were born without enough brains. It is not because they are mentally handicapped. It is their own sin and unbelief that has made them spiritually stupid! It's their own fault! When it comes to God 's Word and God's ways, they are stupid!
The stupidity of the children of Israel is described in Isaiah 1:3: “The _____ knoweth his owner, and the ass (knoweth) his master's crib (manger, place where food is placed), but Israel doth not _____________, my people doth not consider.” The ox knows who its owner is and it submits. The donkey knows who feeds it and knows who meets its need. These dumb animals have more sense than the children of Israel! The children of Israel are ignorant of the God who owns them and is able to meet their every need. Why are they so stupid? Because they have R_____________________ against God (Isaiah 1:2) and they were a S________________ nation (Isaiah 1:4). It was their own REBELLION and SINFULNESS which made them so stupid! It was their own fault and they were to blame!
In Hosea 4:6, the Bible talks about a group of people who are destroyed
because of a "LACK OF K_________________________." Why do people lack
knowledge? There are two possible reasons. One person may lack knowledge because
he was never given knowledge (he was never told and he was never taught). This
person is IGNORANT. Another person lacks knowledge for another reason. This
person has been given knowledge, but he foolishly rejects this knowledge. This
is the STUPID person. The IGNORANT person says, “I never knew.” The STUPID
person says, “I could have known but I refused to know! I was given
knowledge but I rejected it and threw it away.” Look again at the people
described in Hosea 4:6. Were they IGNORANT or STUPID?
Here is an illustration that may help. There are two reasons why a person might lack money. One person may lack money because he has not been given any money. Another person may lack money because he took the money he was given and foolishly spent it all. Which person is stupid?
King Saul was a stupid person! In 1 Samuel 15 we learn that King Saul was given something, but he rejected it! He was given a command (1 Samuel 15:1-3) but he disobeyed this command (1 Samuel 15:9) and the Bible says that Saul “R_______________________ the word of the LORD” (1 Samuel 15:23,26).
What did Samuel do when he met King Saul after the King had disobeyed God's Word? Did Samuel pity Saul and feel sorry for him and say, “Poor Saul, let's pretend this never happened. It wasn't really your fault. I know you tried to obey God and I am so happy that you destroyed most of the Amalekites!”? Let's see what Samuel really said to Saul in 1 Samuel 15:
|Verse 19--"You did not ___________ the voice of the LORD"
Verse 19--"You did ______________ in the sight of the LORD"
Verse 23--"You have _____________________ the word of the LORD"
Verse 26--"You have _____________________ the word of the LORD"
How can we help a STUPID person? The only CURE is God's Word. Like Samuel we need to keep throwing out God's Word, as you would throw a boomerang. When it comes back, throw it out again and keep hitting the target: “You have disobeyed! You have disobeyed! You have disobeyed!” We must annoy the person and aggravate the person (in a good way) until the person finally awakens and repents of his sin (compare 1 Samuel 15:13 with 15:24).
We must HAMMER God's Word home to the ears and to the heart of the stupid person!
As we think about those who are spiritually stupid, the most important thing is this: I NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT I AM NOT STUPID WHEN IT COMES TO GOD'S WORD! Am I believing what God says? Am I doing what God says?
An ignorant person is someone who DOES NOT KNOW. The one thing that an ignorant person needs is KNOWLEDGE. They do not know, they need to know and we need to help them to know!
The world is filled with ignorant people. Think of your unsaved friends. Most of them are ignorant when it comes to salvation. For example, if you were to ask them, “What kind of person goes to heaven and what kind of person goes to hell?”, they would probably say something like this: GOOD PEOPLE GO TO HEAVEN AND BAD PEOPLE GO TO HELL. Is this really true? Many people believe this, but they are ignorant (they lack knowledge about who really goes to heaven).
Let's think about this carefully:
|1) If only good people go to heaven,
would there be any hope for sinners? ______
2) Does the Bible offer any hope for sinners (1 Timothy 1:15)? _____
3) If only good people go to heaven, then how many people would go to heaven according to Romans 3:12? __________________
4) If bad people go to hell, then how many people would go to hell according to Romans 3:23 and Ecclesiastes 7:20? _________
5) According to John 3:16-18, who goes to heaven? _____________________________________________________ According to these same verses, who goes to hell? ________________________________________________________
This is just one example of how ignorant people need knowledge. If you go and share these things with a person and he rejects what you are saying, then he is more than ignorant, he is spiritually STUPID!
Ignorant people are in the darkness and they need more light. Before Paul was saved, he was ignorant (see 1 Timothy 1:13). He thought the Christians were wrong and he did not know that Jesus was the Christ (the Messiah), the Son of God. God gave Paul more light the day he was saved (the light of His risen Son--Acts 9:1-9). Read Acts 18:24-28. Even though Apollos was “mighty” in the Old Testament Scriptures, were there some things he was ignorant of? ______ Who helped him and gave him more information? _____________________________________________ Did Apollos respond in the right way to this new information? _____ Read Acts 19:1-7. Were these disciples ignorant about certain things (verse 2)? ______ Who helped them and gave them more light? ______________ Did they believe this new information? ______
As we think about helping such people, we need to ask ourselves this important question: WHAT HAVE I DONE WITH THE INFORMATION GOD HAS GIVEN TO ME? HAVE I BEEN RESPONDING IN THE RIGHT WAY TO THE LIGHT GOD HAS GIVEN ME (through the Bible and parents and teachers and pastors)?
A “SEEKER” is a person who is searching and looking for something. A seeker is someone who is trying to find the way of salvation. A seeker is like a traveler who knows where he wants to go but he is not sure how to get there. He needs help. He needs someone to give him directions. He needs someone to show him the right way so that he can find the place he is looking for.
Seekers know where they want to go. They know that they want peace and forgiveness and salvation. They want to find God and come to know God in a personal way, but they do not know how to get to God. They need someone to help them and to point them in the right direction. The way to help a seeker is to point him to Christ. When a person finds Christ his search is ended!
In Acts chapter 8 we find a man who was seeking. He had traveled all the way to Jerusalem to w__________________ (Acts 8:27). But even in the city of Jerusalem he did not find what he was looking for because when he left that city he was still seeking. How do we know that this person was seeking (Acts 8:30)? _______________________________________________________________ Do most unsaved people sit reading from the Bible? _____ This man was searching for something, but did he need help (Acts 8:30-31)? ______ Who was able to help this seeker (Acts 8:34-35)? ________________ Did Philip point this man to Christ (see Chapter 3 these notes)? _______
In Acts chapter 10 we read of another man who was seeking. This man's name was C_________________________ (Acts 10:1). Who helped this seeker and pointed him to Christ (Acts 10:34)? ____________ God directed Philip to the Eunuch and God directed Peter to Cornelius. The same God can direct us to people who are seeking and searching. We can even make this our prayer: “Lord, direct me to those who are seeking to know You. Help me to be the right person in the right place at the right time so that I may talk to the right person and point him (or her) in the right direction!”
In Luke chapter 19 we learn of another man who was seeking. What was his name (verses 2-3)? _________________________ Who was he seeking (verse 3)? _______________ Here in Luke 19 we learn who the real SEEKER is. Who is the greatest SEEKER of all (Luke 19:10)? ___________________________________ Has He found YOU? The Lord Jesus Christ came into this world to seek lost sinners! He loves them. He died for them. He wants to save them. As believers, we also want to seek the lost. We cannot save them but we can point them to the One who can! (See Chapter 1 of these notes.)
According to Isaiah 53:6, how many people are lost? ______ According to this same verse, how many are going in the wrong direction (man's own way instead of God's way)? ______ Have you ever been going along a highway on a trip, and without realizing it you take the wrong turn and start driving in the wrong direction? You might go 10 miles or more before realizing that you are lost! You cannot get back on the right road until you first realize that you are lost!
In Jeremiah 17:9 God describes the heart of man: "The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately _____________." These last two words (“desperately wicked”) mean “incurably sick.” Man's heart is sick with sin, and there is nothing man can do to cure himself. There is only One Person that can cure man's incurable sickness, and that is JESUS CHRIST! He is the Great Physician! The problem is that the doctor is not able to help a person unless that person goes to him!
All men are lost and all men are spiritually sick (with sin). The problem is that most people do not realize how lost they really are and how sick they really are. Before they can be saved, they must first realize they are lost. Before they can be healed, they must first realize they are sick. Only God can really convince a person that he is sinful, lost, spiritually sick and needy. Our job is to help people see what the Bible says about their true spiritual condition. People need to see themselves as God sees them!
In Luke 5:30 the scribes and Pharisees were all upset because Jesus ate with sinners. They failed to realize something! They turned their noses down at sinners, but were they not sinners too (Romans 3:23 and Ecclesiastes 7:20)? _____ What kind of person needs a doctor (Luke 5:31)? ______________________ What kind of person needs a Saviour (Luke 5:32)? __________________________
Suppose your friend were to say to you: “Why not go into the hospital and let the doctor perform an operation on you. He can cut you open and check out all your inner parts and then sew you back up. After a few weeks you will feel great!” Would you want to do this?
On the other hand, what if your doctor told you that you had a deadly cancer growing in your body, and that if he did not remove it soon, it would kill you! Would it take very much to convince you to have an operation? Those who go to Christ must realize how sick and needy they really are!
“My great Physician heals
The lost He came to save;
For me His precious blood He shed,
For me His Life He gave!”
Have you realized how lost and sick you really are? Have you seen yourself as
God sees you? Have you come to the Great Physician and let Him do His saving
work in your heart? Now that you are saved, are you concerned about others who
are lost and sick?