In the scriptures it is quite clear that the Lord loves everyone the same, but that he gives to others more than he does the rest. There is a distinction made between discipleship and those who follow him like the apostles, to those who follow him from a distance as laity in the world.
In the scriptures following the parable of the sower Jesus does not explain it to the multitude, but in private he allows his disciples (who have fickle minds like the multitude because they didn’t understand it either) know the meaning of his words.
He replied, “Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. This is why I speak to them in parables:Matthew:13:11-13
There are other times in the Gospel when Jesus creates miracles like walking on water and the transfiguration giving them only to the apostles. He didn’t do these great miracles for the lay people. Why? Because of the apostles future task of shepherding the flock it was important they both know and are given more than the sheep.
It’s strange because St.Paul says, “We walk by faith not by sight”, yet at the Lords discretion and in the case of the apostles, they were an exception to the rule sight being necessary especially St.Paul who himself was an exception having seen the Lord. To St.Paul it was a shameful thing to have seen the Lord in order to believe. He didn’t want that kind of thing for everyone for blind naïve faith is always more highly rewarded than that by sight.
You can see how the gnostic heresy misread all of this. It has a gnostic flavour to it only that the Church teaches knowledge and experience of God is not a requirement for salvation. By experience I mean being witness to or the subject of supernatural miracles and gifts. In contrast they (gnostics) taught that the more knowledge of God one had, the more he advanced onto salvation he became and those who were ignorant and unlearned were doomed to hell. I hate to presume but it sounds like a bunch of well-to-do academic snobs came up with that heresy.
The Church always maintained a tradition of guarding the study of theology making it confined to clerics and seminarians only. Only recently did they open the gates to allow everyone study the subject in depth. This has both its blessings and curses. A blessing in the sense that theology was made widely accessible to all giving priests a break at a time when there is no priests left to teach it. The Holy Spirit knew years before what the state of the priestly vocations would be so his timing was perfect.
It has also been a curse in the sense that many imbalanced liberal and right wing conservative extremists have used it to their advantage in order to disperse and harm the flock of Christ with their dangerous doctrines especially the American branch. Not only this but they spread their errors to seminarians and lay people to other English speaking countries across a world that holds America as some sort of role model.
I think perhaps it would be a good idea for the Church to consider making tighter restrictions on those proposing to study and teach theology, but the gates are open now. I don’t see a way of closing them. I trust the Holy Spirit is behind it. I must accept that every good decision made by the Holy Spirit somewhere in the background the devil will be at work trying to cause as much damage as he can. Therefore simply closing the doors on something because of the heat demons create isn’t always a good idea either.
Why am I writing this? I write this only to make my reader aware of what they’re getting into when they follow the Lord. As I always say, the King, unless he be aware of the army approaching his castle, will be ill-equipped to fight the battle when it springs upon him. But this cannot be achieved if we do not dig out the demons in our own soul and become self aware. For there are some Kings who, presuming themselves to know better, and blinded by pride and egoism, do not listen to those advisors trying to make them aware of the dangers. They are not self aware so they blindly fall into the pit.