Mr. Know-It-All

36 “But about that day and hour no one knows, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

–Matthew 24:36

Now we know that you know all things, and do not need to have anyone question you; by this we believe that you came from God.”

–John 16:30

When I teach a Bible study, three words come out of my mouth a few times each session: “I don’t know”. Someone will ask a question about Herod’s lineage or the meaning behind some passage in Daniel, and I’ll be stumped.

That’s why I’m good friends with Google. There are times when we all pull out our phones and race to find a reputable source that can answer the question. I’ve learned a long time ago that it’s better to be honest about what you don’t know rather than fake it.

Do you know a “Know-It-All”? Somebody that has an answer for everything? They can pile on “facts” and “talking points” to any argument, so vehement;y that you find it hard to take them seriously? I know a few folks like that. Most of them are just extroverted thinkers. They communicate every thought in their head, even if it hasn’t been thoroughly vetted.

That nickname, Mr. Know-It-All is a put down, right? It has this connotation of arrogance and baffoonery. But what if we apply the term to Jesus?

“Wonderful, Counselor, Prince of Peace, Know it All”. I don’t know, it kind of has a ring to it. If Jesus was human and divine, does that mean Jesus had access to all the information of God? In other words, did Jesus really know IT ALL?

There seems to be some confusion about that. The passage from Matthew seems to indicate that Jesus didn’t know when God the Father would be coming. The passage from John is an assertion that Jesus knows everything.

So which is it? As a boy, standing with the church leaders in the Temple, was he lecturing them on the secrets of the universe? Was the sermon on the mount just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what he could teach us? Did he know every little thing that would happen to him before it did?

Well…I don’t know! (I’m not sure Google does, either). I do know that Jesus’ wisdom and learning seemed to have been unsurpassed. His answers to Kingdom questions, however shrouded in mystery they may have been, pointed in the direction of Truth for all who would follow. I think it would be fair call Jesus Mr. Know-It-All as a compliment.

As for me, I don’t have to have all the answers, and I should never claim to have it all figured out. That doesn’t mean I’ll ever stop learning and growing–that’s part of what it means to live a sanctified life.

Perhaps I’ll have a t-shirt made for my next round of classes. It will say, “Don’t worry, I’m with Mr. Know-It-All”

After all, it’s not so much about what you know,

It’s about who.