Here are seven Bible verses about ignorance.
Ephesians 4:18 “They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart.”
The Apostle Paul wrote Ephesians 4:18 in the context of those who had “become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity” (Eph 4:19) but the church is to live differently from the world and to put away all “bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander” and “with all malice” (Eph 4:31). Rather, we are to “be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph 4:23).
Romans 1:19-20 “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.”
This Bible makes it clear that men and women without faith are fools (Psalm 14:1) and have no excuse at all (Psalm 19:1). Paul, being trained under the master teaching of Gamaliel, knew the scriptures exceeding well and knew better than for man to plead ignorance (Col 1:5,6, 23; John 1:9). Paul knew that they “suppress the truth” (Rom 1:18) which is a verb form showing that it must be done intentionally on a continual basis. Just like someone has to be pushing down (suppressing) on a coil spring, they willfully hold down their knowledge of God’s existence in their conscience. God, Who sees their hearts, knows “that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them” (Rom 2:15).
Proverbs 22:3 “The prudent sees danger and hides himself, but the simple go on and suffer for it.”
God is never in a hurry. When we are walking with God, we are in danger of getting ahead of Him (and His will for our lives) because we can’t see the hidden danger that’s around the corner. God doesn’t need to see around corners…He sees through the corners to everything that’s ahead and in fact, He knows the future. We would do well to be walking with God and taking a daily walk in His Word too because then we’re on enough of a moderate pace in walking with God, we’ve got time to stop when we see danger. The “simple” don’t give it a second thought; they take for granted what’s around the corner so it’s little wonder that they “suffer for it.”
Hosea 4:6 “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.”
Hosea is recording God’s lament of a sort for His people Israel. They are like the blind leading the blind that Jesus spoke about (Luke 6:39), where they all fall in the ditch. God is saying that we can be destroyed for not knowing something. After World War Two, some farmers paid with the lives for their ignorance of knowing there was an old German minefield in their fields. That lack of knowledge cost many a farmer their lives but the reason Israel lacked knowledge was because they “rejected knowledge” so God says “I will reject you…” What knowledge was this? It seems to be about the laws of God (non-Mosaic) because they could no longer qualify as priests since they had rejected the knowledge of God because to reject God’s law is to reject God.
Acts 17:30-31“The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”
God doesn’t wink at sin. He never thinks, “Boys will be boys” because He never condones sin in any way at any time with any person. God’s command is to repent and trust in Christ (Mark 1:15) since the day of God’s judgment is fixed and we don’t know what day that is. It could be tomorrow, next week, or today. For certain, God has appointed a Man to judge the world in righteousness and that is Jesus Christ (Rev 20:12-15).
Proverbs 19:2 “Desire without knowledge is not good, and whoever makes haste with his feet misses his way.”
If someone wanted to be a race car driver but knew next to nothing about it, then it would not probably turn out very good. In fact, it could end in disaster where the driver, and perhaps others, is killed. To have a desire is okay (Psalm 37); but to have it and act upon that desire without the knowledge about it is ignorant. Ignorance is not bliss; it is just plain ignorant.
Psalm 14:1 “The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none who does good.”
I think this the greatest ignorance of all, but it’s a willful ignorance. If Christians are right, then the atheist is in big trouble someday, but if they atheist is right, then what’s the big deal? We all vanish into nothingness anyway. Of course it’s not a matter of “if” but “since” Christianity is true, everyone will have to give an account for their suppressing the knowledge of God and refusing to do what Jesus commanded everyone to do and that was to repent and believe the gospel (Mark 1:15).
Ignorance of the law is no excuse at all. It didn’t help the man who sped through a city limit speed zone sign that read 30 MPH while he was going 50! The man’s excuse that he didn’t see the sign didn’t mean a thing to the officer and neither will our excuse for not having repented and trusted in Christ. Tragically, many will finally know that Jesus Christ is real and that heaven and hell are too. Their ignorance won’t help them then.
Article by Jack Wellman
Jack Wellman is Pastor of the Mulvane Brethren Church in Mulvane Kansas. Jack is also the Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Teaching Children the Gospel available on Amazon.