For we hear that some among you walk in idleness, not busy at work, but busybodies. Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living. (2 Thess. 3:11, 12, ESV)
As was discussed yesterday, I was convicted (by Scripture!) that any learning (especially on secular topics), does not need to be matched to any other set of sources. I’ve basically been, well, a busybody here. So I’ve come to terms with the idea: Let others research their way and do the same your way.
And, bar none, I have reaped many benefits of such. I learned things far beyond what was in the Britannica!
In days past (when encyclopedias were more valued) libraries juxtaposed them with other sources (both reference and circulating), optimizing available knowledge. Just like today’s Google.
Remember, my perspective on technology lies both in the 20th and 21st centuries. Some things of the latter I like, others I would rather prefer from the last century. Believe it or not, whatever its content, any print Britannica is fine, and may even find it unnecessary to keep the online and/or the DVD forms. Any knowledge developed over the years can easily be updated, through yes, the Web!
And, in case you were wondering, the second portion of the verse above, refers not only in self-study (an existing — and and always persisting — pastime), but an actual job (and “living,” namely, to get paid), and thus wherever God leads me. (But remember, after all, in NT times there were no universities or degrees!). And being “quiet” about such matters is to buck up and do whatever work that you are intending to do, not dawdling to draw parallels or competition. (Of course, in the economy, business stands and falls on competition, but that’s a different story). It also, somewhat prophetically for the 20th and 21st centuries, bears the application of keeping within your own (sub-)specialty of a field and not crossing into others.
Americans: remember those commercials for Delta Dental several years ago? It emphasized doing one thing and being good at it. It’s not the exact principle of this, for I do like to explore topics unrelated to what my main area of expertise is. But I’d keep it casual; the web (or sources like Britannica) are prime examples.