Is it possible to be saved and have little or no interest in the Word?

Yes, it is very possible and common
7% (1 vote)
Possible but not probable
36% (5 votes)
No, except in unusual circumstances (e.g., mentally handicapped, under heavy medication, etc.)
43% (6 votes)
No
7% (1 vote)
Other
7% (1 vote)
Total votes: 14
3915 reads

There are 11 Comments

Ed Vasicek's picture

I Peter 2:2 urges believers:

Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation—

Does this mean that newborn babes might not long for the milk of the Word?

 

A friend of mine was talking about a church he used to attend.  He said that one Sunday night a month, they had a Bible study, and he went but few others did.  One Sunday night a month they had a prayer meeting, and few attended but he did.  One Sunday night a month they had "worship" (aka, music) and the place was jammed, but he did not go because music does not really do anything for him spiritually.

I was thinking about this from a lost person's perspective.  Most lost people enjoy or love music, as do most Christians.  Music people often wrongly think EVERYONE enjoys music and condemn those who are not into music.

But as I thought further, I thought, "You know, most lost people love music, but few are interested in studying the Bible or praying."  I think  nominal Christians might be truly saved and have a lessened hunger -- but at least a small appetite for the Word.

What do you think?  Can you be saved and not hunger for the Word?  Lest I be accused otherwise, in the words of Richard Nixon, "Let me make one thing perfectly clear!"  I am NOT saying that attending a Sunday night Bible study is the same as loving the Word.  You can love the Word and NEVER come to church Sunday night.  So I am not confusing one method for studying the Word with studying the Word.

It is the hunger itself I am talking about.  This is not to say that we may fail to discipline ourselves to satisfy that hunger, but I am talking about the desire to look into the Word.

So, what think ye?  What Scriptures might you bring to bear to argue either way?

 

 

"The Midrash Detective"

Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

The question's hard to answer without a time qualifier of some sort. Appetite for Scripture is a key indicator of spiritual life (e.g., 1Pet.2:2-3). A believer can be spiritually unwell for a time. But no appetite for a long, long time is characteristic of the dead not the living.

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

Susan R's picture

EditorModerator

It seems that so many Scriptures point to the change that happens when someone accepts Christ as Savior. They go from being spiritually dead to spiritually alive, they are circumcised from their flesh, they are indwelt by the Holy Spirit, they can now understand spiritual things, they are no longer in darkness but are now children of light, no more condemnation... 

I wonder how someone as big as God can supernaturally move into someone as small as a human and work a miraculous change in their soul and spirit, and there not be a change in that person's desires. 

The bottom line for me is that until I can see into someone's heart, I haven't got a clue.

Ed Vasicek's picture

Susan R wrote:

It seems that so many Scriptures point to the change that happens when someone accepts Christ as Savior. They go from being spiritually dead to spiritually alive, they are circumcised from their flesh, they are indwelt by the Holy Spirit, they can now understand spiritual things, they are no longer in darkness but are now children of light, no more condemnation... 

I wonder how someone as big as God can supernaturally move into someone as small as a human and work a miraculous change in their soul and spirit, and there not be a change in that person's desires. 

The bottom line for me is that until I can see into someone's heart, I haven't got a clue.

 

Susan, at first you seem to be implying that a regenerate person would desire (hunger for) the Word, then later you seem to say that maybe not.  Am I reading you right?

"The Midrash Detective"

Jeffrey Dean's picture

A practical matter may include whether a new believer can read. I'm not being facetious.  I seen a few hundred new believers on different trips to very remote Africa.  They believed on hearing the gospel message, but they neither read nor had access to Bibles.  They were poor and hungry lived with death as a constant possibility.  Their concerns were practical concerns of water, food, and shelter.  Perhaps this example doesn't help, but I suspect that desperate physical needs trump a desire for the Word most of the time.  So I would say being saved and not having little interest in the Word is common.   

Susan R's picture

EditorModerator

Ed Vasicek wrote:

Susan R wrote:

It seems that so many Scriptures point to the change that happens when someone accepts Christ as Savior. They go from being spiritually dead to spiritually alive, they are circumcised from their flesh, they are indwelt by the Holy Spirit, they can now understand spiritual things, they are no longer in darkness but are now children of light, no more condemnation... 

I wonder how someone as big as God can supernaturally move into someone as small as a human and work a miraculous change in their soul and spirit, and there not be a change in that person's desires. 

The bottom line for me is that until I can see into someone's heart, I haven't got a clue.

Susan, at first you seem to be implying that a regenerate person would desire (hunger for) the Word, then later you seem to say that maybe not.  Am I reading you right?

Bro. Ed, "is it possible" questions are impossible. Bleah But, it seems to me that Scripture supports the idea of major change taking place when someone is saved. Of course, there are also passages about those who grow carnal and cold, but how much of that is just allowing themselves to be overwhelmed, while inside they are crying out? Doesn't the Spirit in us desire the Word, and doesn't He grieve when we aren't obeying the Word? How can they have the Spirit within them and feel nothing?

I think it might be a case of appearances- to us someone might be acting as if they couldn't care less, but I wonder what is going on inside of them. I can't imagine that they have no desire at all for good things, even if we can't see that.

Ed Vasicek's picture

Susan R. wrote:

Bro. Ed, "is it possible" questions are impossible. Bleah But, it seems to me that Scripture supports the idea of major change taking place when someone is saved. Of course, there are also passages about those who grow carnal and cold, but how much of that is just allowing themselves to be overwhelmed, while inside they are crying out? Doesn't the Spirit in us desire the Word, and doesn't He grieve when we aren't obeying the Word? How can they have the Spirit within them and feel nothing?

I think it might be a case of appearances- to us someone might be acting as if they couldn't care less, but I wonder what is going on inside of them. I can't imagine that they have no desire at all for good things, even if we can't see that.

Susan, I am not talking about a desire for good things in general, but the Word in particular. The question of the poll is: "Is it possible to be saved and have little or no interest in the Word?" Off and on or times of no interest with times of interest would be "little" as I use the term. Have you ever met professing Christians (who claim to have been saved for some time) who express no interest (at all) in Bible study or reading (and never have), but literally only want music or sermons to help them cope with life?  They obviously do not attend our church. We have some of that mentality out here in Indiana.  I do not assume they are lost because of their profession, but neither do I assume they are saved. As you say, we cannot see the inside, but I am saying that if they are saved -- though perhaps invisible to us -- they must desire the Word at least somewhat and at least sometimes.  Do you agree with my approach?

Jeff said:

A practical matter may include whether a new believer can read. I'm not being facetious.

You don't have to go to Africa to see this, brother.  I have come across a number of believers right here in Indiana who cannot read.  Actually, when I came to the current church I pastor -- back in 1983 -- one of our elders could not read.  Other people read so poorly that they cannot read the Bible.  But a regenerate person, I believe, still wants the Word, even if such a desire is intermittent.  We are fortunate in our day to have the Bible on CD, over the internet, etc., so that one may listen (we are doing a Bible read through and/or listen through this year.  Most of my Bible progress was read by Max MacLean at biblegateway.com; we have our own church expression, "listening to Max.")   So I hear you about literacy.  Eye problems are another related issue.  The question, however, is really about desire.  Can one be regenerate and never desire the Word?

"The Midrash Detective"

Susan R's picture

EditorModerator

Many things are 'possible' because people can be conditioned to like/not like certain things. For instance, I grew up in a Christian home, so the Bible was part of my every day life. I loved every aspect of church, and reading the Bible was as interesting to me as reading anything else, from Oliver B Greene to Nancy Drew. I was lost, however, and did not get saved until I was 26. How could a lost person enjoy the reading Word? Because I was conditioned to enjoy reading, period. I'm happy with the back of a cereal box if that is all that's handy.

Another person who was raised in a home where books and reading were not encouraged, or even seen as unpleasant, might have a very difficult time with a hunger for the Word in written form. My husband prefers an audio Bible, because reading was never part of his life other than what was necessary in order to function. He has to work at reading- not that he can't read or has reading comprehension issues, it's just that the act of reading puts him to sleep in about 8.5 seconds, or his mind wanders. He will read, but doesn't find the act of reading pleasant, per se. But I know he loves the Scriptures and studies in his own way.

I said all that for a reason I have already forgotten, but I do agree with you, that if the Spirit is within us, we will have that desire, even if our flesh is able to overcome the desire of the Spirit, we are going to feel the grief and guilt. But since the capacity of the human mind to deceive itself is infinite, I think people are able to quench the Spirit, salving their conscience with good music, self help/devotionals books, and sermons.

My rule of thumb is "Don't read books about a Book you don't read."

Ed Vasicek's picture

Susan, I like your saying: "Don't read books about a Book you don't read."   We are talking about hunger for the Word, however, which is different from reading the Word.  In my mind, there is no difference between reading and listening to the Word, as your husband does.

Thanks for your thoughts.

"The Midrash Detective"

Rob Fall's picture

After all, back in the day even with an otherwise literate congregation, most of their Bible intake was from someone reading Scripture to them.

Ed Vasicek wrote:

SNIP In my mind, there is no difference between reading and listening to the Word, as your husband does.

Thanks for your thoughts.

Hoping to shed more light than heat..