1.26.2011

Law Chapel: Man's Knowledge v. God's Wisdom and Power

At last Thursday’s Law Chapel service Regent Law professor Michael Hernandez reminded listeners to rely on God’s wisdom and power, as opposed to their own knowledge, to fuel their calling.

“I don’t want people to think that sitting in the classroom and filling your head with knowledge is equal to wisdom,” he said. According to Hernandez, the most knowledgeable person can lack wisdom, and the wisest person can lack knowledge.

Professor Hernandez came to Regent Law excited to teach but unsure of what subject he preferred – so long as it was not property, a subject of which he had little knowledge. As God would have it, however, property was just the position that needed to be filled, so when asked if he would teach the course he humbly responded, “I am here to serve.”

“When you’re in a position like that, you know what you don’t know,” he remarked about feeling ill-equipped to teach the subject. But God honored his willing spirit, and now, 19 years later, not only is he Regent Law’s go-to professor on the subject, but he has contributed to a number of publications on property law.

After sharing this personal anecdote he gave examples of two Biblical personae who refused to rely on their own knowledge to fulfill their calling. The first he spoke of was ill-educated but “full of faith and of the Holy Spirit… and God’s grace and power” (Acts 6:5,8), and stunned the greatest minds of his day; the other was well educated but whose “message and [whose] preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power” (1 Cor. 2:1-5). Hernandez explained that both Stephen (the former) and Paul (the latter) are epitome examples of people whom God used to make “foolish the wisdom of the world” (1 Cor. 1:18-21).

“The question,” he said, “is not whether we should pursue knowledge. The question is our perception and our understanding of that knowledge.”

Ultimately, Professor Hernandez wanted listeners to remember that their faith and trust should not be in the tools of their knowledge but in the Giver of the calling for which they are acquiring knowledge.


 - By Molly Eccles