…–my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests; because you have ignored the law of your God, I also will ignore your children. (Hosea 4:6 NIV)
The above has something to say to the “Pan-Millennialists”. I used to think it was clever to remain uncommitted in the Pre-, Mid- or Post-Millennial debate. I used to jokingly say, “I’m Pan-Millennial, since it’ll all ‘pan out’ in the end.” Though I had been through seminary, I thought the “Pan-Millennial” term was witty. Really I was displaying my ignorance. When it comes to matters of great importance, stupidity is never laudable nor laughable. It’s a severe liability. The Word of God to Hosea describes the high price of ignorance“…my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge”. The Lord was not warning his enemies or a people belonging to someone else. He was speaking of the destruction of His own people (“my people”). Pastors who act dumb or uninformed priests are especially culpable. Children (PK’s) will pay the price for daddy’s ignorance (cf. Hos. 4:6b). The pastors/priests are no better off than those who prophesy falsely. At least false prophets are not lukewarm. Within the past year I heard a renowned evangelical, a man I highly respect, address a large Bible conference. In the midst of his message he discouraged what the Bible encourages. He told Christians they were not supposed to have certainty about the details of Jesus’ coming. Did he really mean to say that the Lord authors confusion? Amos 3:7, Isaiah 42:9, 43:19 and John 15:15 flies in the face of the “We aren’t supposed to know what’s coming” theory. How useful to God are those who should possess some knowledge about the end times, but, instead, plead ignorance? Perhaps someone ought to read them the prophets. Maybe they need frightened into a different attitude. Daniel was highly esteemed by heaven (Dan. 10:10, 19). What did Daniel do to merit this great honor? The answer is simple: He read the prophets, specifically, Jeremiah, for clearer understanding (Dan. 9:2-3). Those in God’s throne room will take note of a man who pursues knowledge. Daniel is an example. Heaven’s messenger said to him,
“Do not be afraid Daniel. Since the first day you set your mind to gain understanding, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them.” (Dan. 9:12 NIV)
The heavenly messenger had a few last words to God’s esteemed servant, Daniel, that we need to hear. At the end of the book that bears his name, we read:
He replied, “Go your way Daniel, because the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end. Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.” (Dan. 12:9-10 NIV)
Regardless what anyone says, for God’s people who possess the Law and the Prophets, ignorance is punishable. The Lord has spoken in Genesis to Revelation. There is honor for the wise who understand and a high price for those who lack of knowledge.