TITLE: True Or False
DATE: February 3, 2019
TEXT: James 2:19 (ESV) - You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!”
Here’s a simple True or False test… and it has only one question.
The question is: “How an individual does on a test is based on what he knows about the material being tested on that day.”
Now if you had asked me that question yesterday, I would have said, “True.” Today my answer would be, “In part, but not completely.” Why the change? Well, partly because of a fascinating new study done by Christopher Rozek, a postdoctoral scholar in the Psychology Department at Sanford University.
The study tested 1,200 students at a large High School in the Midwest. They were trying to find out how self-image, fear, and anxiety make a difference in how a student tests in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
As the author of this devotion I must confess I have neither the time, space, or inclination to tell you the long, drawn-out and boring procedure they used to conduct the tests.
I will merely say this: when those students who traditionally had not done well in the past and were expected not to do well in the future were prepared; when their anxiety about testing had been talked through, their test failure rate was cut in half.
Barnard College President Sian Beilock, a nationally known scientist who studies the pressures children face in school summarized things this way: “It’s not just about what you know in a particular moment, but your perceptions of the situation, your worries also matter. Your anxiety can affect how you demonstrate what you know when it matters most.”
So there you have it. When it comes to tests in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, knowledge ain’t everything.
Now, if you don’t mind, I’d like to ask one more True or False question. Here it is: How an individual does on Judgment Day is based on what he knows about the material being tested.”
I hope you answered: “False.”
Now it is true, to be saved you have to have some knowledge. For example you ,must know you are a sinner and that Jesus Christ lived, died and rose so that sinners can be saved.” Now if you know that…. GOOD FOR YOU.
But knowledge alone isn’t enough to open the pearly gates. A person might have memorized, and be able to quote the entire Bible, but all of that isn’t enough to save them.
Truly, if you are going to be saved you must, by the Holy Spirit’s doing, be brought to a living faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and heaven-sent Savior from sin. Of course, Paul said it far better than I when he wrote: Ephesians 2:8-9 (ESV) “ For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks that You have done all which was necessary for me to be saved. Now I ask that my faith and knowledge never be shaken by the attacks of Satan and this world. This I ask in the Redeemer’s Name. Amen.
Today’s devotion was inspired by various articles, amongst which is the one written by the GoodNewsNetwork on January 15, 2019 . Those who wish may check out this link which was, at the time of writing, fully active: https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/easing-anxieties-with-ten-minute-writing-exercises-reduces-high-school-freshman-failure-rates/
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann, one of my long-ago confirmands. He is singing with three brothers. This song comes from the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html