Heb 5:12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. (KJV)
Heb 5:11 We have a lot to explain about this. But since you have become too lazy to pay attention, explaining it to you is hard.
Heb 5:12 By now you should be teachers. Instead, you still need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word. You need milk, not solid food.
Heb 5:13 All those who live on milk lack the experience to talk about what is right. They are still babies.
Heb 5:14 However, solid food is for mature people, whose minds are trained by practice to know the difference between good and evil. (GW, God’s Word translation)
Heb 5:11 Much more could be said about this subject. But it is hard to explain, and all of you are slow to understand.
Heb 5:12 By now you should have been teachers, but once again you need to be taught the simplest things about what God has said. You need milk instead of solid food.
Heb 5:13 People who live on milk are like babies who don’t really know what is right.
Heb 5:14 Solid food is for mature people who have been trained to know right from wrong. (CEV, Contemporary English Version)
The best way to learn something better is to teach it to others.
Of course, it helps to know something about a subject before you attempt to teach others.
When it comes to getting to know the Bible, the process of becoming a qualified teacher is actually quite simple to understand and then do.
In my experience, after becoming saved on November 7, 1953, I met a man, Fred Hicks, who was a painter by profession. He had outfitted one of his trucks as a mobile pulpit, which he drove to places where he could stop to preach the Word of God. He invited me to come with him several times to Campus Martius in downtown Detroit where he had a permit to conduct his street preaching. That was a new experience for me. I had the opportunity to talk to people about the Bible, about our Lord Jesus Christ, and about salvation.
About the same time I was encouraged to take a class under Mrs. Florence Key in teacher training so I could become a Sunday school teacher. I was given a class of junior boys in my own classroom. We were studying the book of Genesis. We had a lesson about the flood of Noah. I remember teaching the lesson, then studying the subject further using some books I checked out of the Highland Park Baptist church library. I learned enough from those books that I realized I needed to re-teach the lesson to my class. I believe that even fourth grade boys can become interested in the Bible and learn much more than most adults would suspect.
I continued to attend the Holiness Youth Crusade monthly meetings and was encouraged by the president of the local Methodist Youth Fellowship (MYF) to become a counselor to help those who came forward to give their lives to Christ. This became further training in the subject of soul winning and witnessing.
In the summer of 1954 I attended a vacation Bible school class for high school students taught by Miss Ellen Groh, then a student at the Detroit Bible College (later named Tyndale College) who became a missionary to Africa. This was a class about how to study the Bible. I was introduced to such Bible study tools as Vine’s Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, The New Topical Textbook, and The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge. I was taught various Bible study methods as we studied the book of 2 Timothy. I have placed many of those lessons on this site under the category found on the right hand side of this page, “How to Study the Bible.”
At high school, I was encouraged by the MYF president to join her in attending the Voice of Christian Youth (VCY) Bible club which met each Tuesday after school in room 666. I became a member of the quiz team, and our team won the city championship in the final quiz held at the VCY rally at the Masonic Temple. Our team decided to parcel out the Bible books to be studied which were to be the subject of the final quiz. I was given the book of James to study thoroughly. I think I just about memorized the whole book in preparation for the quiz. When I recognized the question pertained to James, I immediately jumped up to answer the question. When the question was about 1 Peter, I sat back in my chair and relaxed to let another team member answer. The audience and the quiz master, Paul Veenstra, caught on. He stopped to encourage me to be ready for whatever question came next. A little embarrassing, but we still won!
By way of direct application, I must warn that Bible teaching comes with great responsibility. James warns us:
Jas 3:1 My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. (KJV)
Jas 3:1 Brothers and sisters, not many of you should become teachers. You know that we who teach will be judged more severely. (GW)
Jas 3:1 My friends, we should not all try to become teachers. In fact, teachers will be judged more strictly than others. (CEV)
In today’s world, with access to the Internet and Facebook, many are posting Bible teaching for others to benefit from. This is a very good thing. But I have noticed from time to time that some are not entirely open to careful instruction and correction. Be very careful about this. If someone cares enough about your message to others to correct you when you are mistaken in your understanding, as I have sometimes done, take extreme care on your part to learn from the correction.
I am always open to correction. How about you? Don’t be afraid to leave a comment here!