Is Understanding Scripture a Result of IQ and Education?

Suppose someone is unusually intelligent. Does that improve his ability to distinguish red from green? Suppose someone has a great amount of education. Does that improve his ability to distinguish red from green?

Will high intelligence or lengthy education enhance one’s accuracy in interpreting Scripture? They may, if they increase the amount of Scripture he bears in mind and the range of facts he considers.

But more education and higher IQ may not result in more consideration of truth. A person’s absorption of truth may be influenced more by his friendship with God (John 8:31-32), his submission to God (Hebrews 5:14), and the variety of gifts he receives from the Holy Spirit. (I Corinthians 12:8,10).

I find it amazing and disturbing that interpreters of indistinguishable intelligence, education, communion with God, and spiritual gifts come to different conclusions about the meaning and implications of Scripture. Perhaps God allows it to be so in order to protect us from idolatry. If we knew a teacher, a school, a denomination, a circle, or a tradition that excelled all others, we would be inclined to render inappropriate reverence, bordering on worship. Perhaps not even doctrinal excellence is allowed to infringe on worship. “My glory I will not give to another.” (Isaiah 42:8) No Nehushtan allowed!* If that be the explanation, it calls us to worship. (*2Kings 18:4 Remember the bronze serpent? Jews burned incense to it.)

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