On Knowing and Caring
BYU Speeches, pp. 311-322, 1997-1998
14 Pages Posted: 27 Aug 2009
Date Written: August, 26 2009
After reviewing Paul’s instruction in 1 Corinthians, chapter 8, we at a university dedicated to the acquisition and advancement of knowledge must pause somewhat and ask ourselves two questions. First, is it possible that caring is that important? And second, is it possible that knowing is that harmful?
Let’s consider each of these questions in turn. First, is caring, or charity, that important? The scriptures amply demonstrate that the answer to that question is an unequivocal yes. Charity is that important.
But, turning to the second question, is it also true that knowledge pales by comparison, that it is indeed harmful because it inevitably gets in the way of charity, as Paul seems to suggest. To put it more bluntly, are we all wasting our time here at this university where we are expected to expend so much effort in studying and acquiring knowledge? Isn’t it enough if we just learn to be really nice to everyone? Again, scriptural and prophetic statements supply the answer - but this time the response is an emphatic no.
Keywords: Knowledge, charity, learning, education, motivation, 1 Corinthians 8 & 13, Bartolome de Las Casas, wisdom
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