Saturday, September 12, 2009

Literacy and the Gospel (part 5)

Some have said sharing the gospel is the most important thing and should not focus on literacy. I agree that sharing the gospel is of utmost importance. Some argue that the majority of first century persons were illiterate, but Christians took the gospel to them and spread it orally. Praise God for those believers.

I understand that first century Christians and unbelievers were mostly illiterate and even today it is possible to be a Christian to be illiterate and grow in a relationship with Christ. But I believe literacy is very important in the process of sanctification and think it should not be ignored. I believe scripture is clear that we should be reading his word.

We are told in scripture to meditate on the word and to do what is written in are we to do that if one can't read?
Joshua 1:8
This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

We know that scripture reveals to us that knowing the scriptures helps us to understand Christ. How can we deepen our knowledge of Christ and who he is without being able to read and comprehend the words of scripture?
2 Timothy 3:15-17
and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
The mysteries of Christ are revealed in the scriptures...
Eph 3:3-4
How the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ,
I believe literacy ministries can serve people in different ways. I do believe that bringing the gospel to someone is more important than just teaching a person to read. But literacy ministries can bring people to a place where they might not have come before and hear the word spoken to them there. Becoming literate will enable them to read scriptures on their own. If an illiterate unbelievers becomes a Christian being able to read will allow them to grow in their relationship with Christ. We should not neglect the gospel, but should promote literacy among believers and unbelievers that they may not only heard but read the sweet gospel message written to us in the scriptures.

1 comment:

rick said...

First Century illiteracy is a red herring. The point is that the gospels and the epistles were written and they were meant to be read, aloud if necessary to those who could not read for themselves. Literacy is intimately tied with the gospel. Keep up the good work with this series.