Are You a Renaissance Christian? 12 Tips for Pursuing Knowledge and Wisdom in Daily Life

by Kenneth Samples

I first heard the expression “renaissance Christian” from apologist and attorney John Warwick Montgomery in the early 1980s. Montgomery gave a lecture at the former Simon Greenleaf School of Law on the importance of developing the Christian mind. The lecture left a deep impression on me.

Building on Montgomery’s idea, I often talk about the importance of believers pursuing the life of the mind to the glory of God. The Renaissance era (beginning in the fourteenth century) was a revival or rebirth of classical learning and culture that took place in certain European cities. The “renaissance Christian” then can be defined as a believer in Christ who pursues knowledge and wisdom as a daily priority in life.

Historic Christianity concurs that God reveals truth in two books: the figurative book of nature (God’s world or general revelation) and the literal book of Scripture (God’s Word or special revelation). Therefore, when Christ’s followers pursue truth of any kind they will see the signature of the Creator-Redeemer who reveals the ultimate Truth.

January is a great time to set new goals and resolutions. So, I offer the following 12 tips for beginning (or deepening) your pursuit of the life of the mind to the glory of God.

1. First of all, take inventory of how much of your weekly time is spent on entertainment and recreation as compared to the pursuit of knowledge.

For most people, including Christians, the pursuit of knowledge is low on the priority list. Now’s the time to do something about that. Remember that we are commanded to love God with our mind, as well as our heart and strength (Mark 12:30).

2. Make the pursuit of knowledge and wisdom a daily priority.

According to the Christian worldview, all truth is God’s truth.

3. Set short-term and long-term reading goals.

Of course, reading is the best place to start when pursuing knowledge and wisdom, but it can be difficult to know where or how to begin…

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