Herbert Spencer, an English philosopher, biologist, anthropologist, and sociologist once said, “The great aim of education is not knowledge but action.” So, I gather this quotation means that we can get an education, but unless we act on what we’ve learned, what good is the education? For example, you can take courses and read all about learning to fly an airplane, but if you get your pilot’s license and never actually fly, what good was all the education? Our brains can handle a lot, but if we never do anything to use what we’ve learned, what will it profit us?
I love the following statement:
“To LOOK is one thing
To SEE what you look at is another
To UNDERSTAND what you see is a third
To LEARN from what you understand is still something else
But to ACT on what you learn is all that matters.”
James also tells us to not only read the Bible but also live it. The first chapter of James beckons us to be swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath. He goes on and tells us not to be partial to certain types of people but to treat everyone with the same dignity. If there is a man who has no shirt, we should give him our shirt and take care of his need. Do what God is asking you to do, don’t just learn about it.
So what is the great lesson here? Obey and act on what we’ve learned from God. Do what He is asking us to do. Don’t just read about it.
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.