Study to shew thyself approved unto God [and others], a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15, KJV).
My Musings – “The power of 10,000 [people] is of no value if none of them know anything about the subject.” (Marcus Aurelius).
“In religion and politics people’s beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from other non-examiners, whose opinions about them were not worth a brass farthing.” (Mark Twain).
Our testimony has zero credibility if we don’t really “know anything about the subject” other than what we have “gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from other non-examiners.” It is no more than our opinion. It may still be true, but our ignorance on the subject robs it of its power, and may do more harm than good.
My Advice – Are you a long-time believer? Thinking that “by this time you ought to be teachers, [but] you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. [That] you need milk, not solid food! [Aware that] anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. [In need of] solid food [that] is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil, [and able to] leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity?” (Hebrews 5:12–6:1, NIV 1984).
Perhaps you are a new convert. “Like newborn babies, [you] crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” (1 Peter 2:1–3, NIV 1984).
Either way, my book (see Store) “Got Spiritual Milk?” may be a good place to start. I say start, because it is merely the beginning. You’ll want to make sure that I am not one of those “authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from other non-examiners.” Like the Bereans, “noble [in] character… received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what [the Brew] said was true.” (Acts 17:11, NIV 1984). Make your second-hand knowledge first-hand knowledge.
Put “power” and “value” behind your “beliefs and convictions” by “rightly dividing the word of truth.”