Stupid Idiots – Ignorant Christians

Stupid Idiots

I went to hear a brother speak a while back that advocated that Christians should be “stupid idiots”.  (His words, not mine!)

To give this brother the benefit of the doubt, and to find out what the intent of the message was, I set off on a wee bit of study into Acts 4:13, his text for the day.

After my preliminary study, I decided to contact this brother, share with him what I found in my study, discuss his message and ask for any clarification.  What follows is the beginning of the correspondence I had with this brother.

Act 4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.

Secondly – ignorant (Strong’s 2399)

Vines states – “Ignorant (ἰδιῶται) Originally, one in a private station, as opposed to one in office or in public affairs. Therefore one without professional knowledge, a layman; thence, generally, ignorant, ill-informed; sometimes plebeian, common. In the absence of certainty it is as well to retain the meaning given by the A. V., perhaps with a slight emphasis on the want of professional knowledge. Compare 1Cor. 14:16, 1Cor. 14:23, 1Cor. 14:24; 2Cor. 11:6.”

Robertson states – “And ignorant (kai idiōtai). Old word, only here in the N.T. and 1Cor. 14:24; 2Cor. 11:6. It does not mean “ignorant,” but a layman, a man not in office (a private person), a common soldier and not an officer, a man not skilled in the schools, very much like agrammatos. It is from idios (one’s own) and our “idiosyncracy” is one with an excess of such a trait, while “idiot” (this very word) is one who has nothing but his idiosyncracy. Peter and John were men of ability and of courage, but they did not belong to the set of the rabbis.”

Clarke states – “ignorant, ιδιωται, persons in private life, brought up in its occupations alone. It does not mean ignorance in the common acceptation of the term; and our translation is very improper. In no sense of the word could any of the apostles be called ignorant men; for though their spiritual knowledge came all from heaven, yet in all other matters they seem to have been men of good, sound, strong, common sense.”

What think ye?

Should Christians seek the label of “stupid idiots”?

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Thanks again for coming to visit. I hope you found something of interest in this post and would appreciate a comment, to begin a discussion.

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