Vol.XIV No.III Pg.8
May 1977

Stuff About Things

Robert F. Turner

When I first began to "make talks" I ran across some scripture I did not understand. My father, an elder in our home church, helped me on those passages, but with the help he issued a warning and ever-needed wisdom.

He said the Bible was made up of individual bits of truth, many of which seemed complete and self-sustaining, but were actually only a part of the total picture. The part should always he understood in light of the whole (keep things in context) and if that isn't wisdom enough — the better one understands the whole, the richer the part becomes.

He went on to say that I would find many passages that were unclear. I should not become discouraged. If careful study, with attention to such context as I knew, did not explain them, just put them in a pigeon hole. We were sitting beside his roller-top desk, and the illustration was plain. "Some day," He said, "you will find other truths not now known to you; and this wider knowledge will answer some earlier questions. You can then remove that problem from its pigeon hole." It made good sense to me. Then, maybe because he knew human nature in general; or my nature in particular; he added a final warning. "Robert, I hope you live to be one hundred, and learn much Bible, and answer many problems for yourself and for others. But know this: when you die, you are going to leave things in the pigeon holes" (or words to that effect). I'm just beginning to learn how smart the old man was. What I need is a bigger desk.

'This is no indictment of the Bible nor of man's capacity to understand it. The same principle is true of all great quests — we are seekers throughout life's journey. The remarkable thing about God's word is the amount of information ascertainable to those who seek in faith — the opening of heavenly vistas to unworthy mortals. "When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, ... what is man that thou art mindful of him?" Psm. 8: Then let us develop a more humble attitude in our studies. Let as deal reverently with God's message to man, confident that we can, if we will, find there a light for our path. We will never know it all, but we can know enough to serve Him faithfully and, by His grace, be saved.