Becoming a Lifelong Unlearner

I came across yet another promotional post touting the virtues of Financial Peace University. For those who may not know, it’s a financial system created by self-appointed money guru Dave Ramsey. Among his many tenets are the eschewing of any credit cards and the belief that people should simply “pay for everything in cash.” No one is a fan of debt. So superficially, it all sounds fabulous. But when one recognizes the multiplicity of situations and life circumstances people may find themselves in, it is easy to see that his approach might not work for everyone.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Very much enjoy all of your articles.


“We are purportedly “people of the Book.” And some of us mock adherents of other faiths for blindly following their leaders without applying critical thought. Yet Adventists fall prey to these same tendencies far more than we care to admit. We hesitate to pull on the threads of some precepts for fear our entire belief system will unravel. But if it is that fragile, it deserves to be unraveled. Truth that can’t withstand scrutiny is not truth. And if our devotion to teachers or our anxiety about disturbing the familiar is what keeps us from critical thought, then we set ourselves up to be tethered to error.”
Profound. Thank you Courtney Ray for teaching and setting people free.


This quote got me:

Which of course rules out the possibility of singing in harmony with one’s guardian angel since music necessarily involves elements of being on time as well as in tune!


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Thank-you for how well you express ideas. Some days, I feel I have unlearned more than I have learned, which only sounds impossible.

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Wow, is this writer really a life long learner and yet all she knows of Dave Ramsey is that he is self appointed money guru. Amazing. Just a quick look at his website gives a very different view:
“Dave Ramsey is an eight-time national bestselling author, personal finance expert and host of The Ramsey Show, heard by 23 million listeners every week. He has appeared on Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, Today, Fox News, CNN, Fox Business and many more. Since 1992, Dave has helped people take control of their money, build wealth and enhance their lives. He also serves as CEO for the company Ramsey Solutions.”

Major point of life long learners is they look for information.

Again very wrong, take for example this quote:
" In a “How to Cancel a Credit Card” post on Facebook, Ramsey got right to the point: “Debt is DUMB. Cash is KING. A debit card will do everything that a credit card can do, EXCEPT put you into debt.” Dave Ramsey Says You Don’t Need a Credit Card — What You Should Consider

Is it true that not having a credit card might not work for everyone? Of course everyone could get along without a credit card, they may not want to but they certainly could and having 108 million Americans with credit card debt which seems to average about 20% interest rates there seems to be a problem there.

If one is a life long learner one should have a far more open mind than the author of this article.

All of the above does not make him a financial genius, just an incredibly good self-promoter. What are his actual qualifications? All I can see here is a reinforcement of the “self appointed” qualification.

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Unlearning is tough for all of us…we all need to do it, no doubt. However, I see most contexts involving “unlearning” to mean goin from the more conservative literal Bible interpretation to the more progressive liberal perspective. Sometimes that is needed. But are more liberal non traditional sda’s also unlearning their errors and adopting a more conservative view if that’s where the truth leads?

Unlearning is needed by conservatives and liberals alike as we all grow in knowledge of the word. Just seems these articles typically only use the “angel stands at the door” conservative examples and not something going from liberal to more conservative.

Jesus corrected the extremists in both sides.

Notice how you went from self-promoter to being self-appointed. They are not the same thing at all. Every business owner is a self-promoter, particularly if one is in the radio business. No one self-appointed goes on to a long career. Of course, the accusation against him was based upon him being self-appointed, you changed it to he was not a financial genius. Though to parley his experience into 8 best-selling books and a multimillion-dollar business is pretty much in the financial genius category. I don’t know the value of the business but the headquarters in Nashville is valued at 42 million. So by qualitative standards, he likely qualifies as a financial genius. But I understand he is not a political progressive and must be derided by the folks at spectrum.

The point being, people have to be open-minded enough to look at the facts and question their own presuppositions. Even while writing an article on that very subject the author did not do that. Spectrum could do so much better if the writers and readers would be open-minded instead of following one prescribed course of progressive politics which becomes their progressive religion.

Dave Ramsey’s call to be free of debt of credit cards is not the enemy his political views are the enemy to political progressives and that distorts their view of him. That creates the he is “self-appointed” appellation. It is the presuppositions that become the basis for beliefs that is the problem. Ellen White is a prophet. Ellen White says your guardian angel does not go with you into a theater. (I will ignore that theater means something completely different from the movie theaters we go to). The presupposition being EGW is a prophet and the information she gives is from God even though there is nothing about guardian angels in the Bible or where they could or could not go. If someone wants Adventists to question their presuppositions but they don’t question their own presuppositions they are being hypocritical. Right now Spectrum (and Adventist Today) is viewed by probably the majority of Adventists as a hypocritical parachurch organization. As long as they continue to stroke with one oar they will just go around in circles and not be of any use except to those who like Richard above say stroke that one oar harder!

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Right, the shorthand for this is…self appointed financial guru (and multi-millionaire). The FP craze swept through our small town, so I would see devotees (fairly affluent) at the grocery store with their little separate envelopes carefully categorizing their purchases. While this can certainly be a blessing for some when they can make it work, it becomes an absolute gospel to others - sort of like Amway or Slick-50 - how to lose friends fast. It’s like an extreme form of dieting; it works great for a while, but isn’t sustainable.


Of course, you can make it shorthand for anything you want to believe that does not make it true of course. I have never taken his course, just heard him on the radio sometimes and it all seems to be pretty good advice. Never even had anyone preach the gospel of Ramsey to me as apparently you have. I wonder if there are followers of Christ that don’t do Him justice and become obnoxious. Should we, therefore, call Christ a self-appointed guru? I am quite sure you can find people that do that. Still, does that make such statements true?

All that and still no qualifications mentioned.

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Oh I see you want to know what his college degree was, because that must be the only kind of qualifications you think there are. Well from Wikipedia it says :
" Ramsey was born in Antioch, Tennessee, to real estate developers.[2] He attended Antioch High School where he played ice hockey. At age 18, Ramsey took the real estate exam[2] and began selling property, working through college at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville,[2] where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance and Real Estate.[3]

By 1986, Ramsey had amassed a portfolio worth over $4 million.[4][5] However, when the Competitive Equality Banking Act of 1987 took effect, several banks changed ownership and recalled his $1.2 million in loans and lines of credit because he was over-leveraged.[2] Ramsey was unable to pay and filed for bankruptcy in 1988."

Thank you…Ron, thank you Wikipedia.

“I am an imperfect person. I strive to grow daily. There are things I sincerely believed and preached in the past that I’ve changed my views on.”

Me, too. Thank you.


I have read some of Ramsey, and my daughter is a follower. She is now debt free and doing well, thank you. She has preached to us some about credit cards, but with a business, we have needed them. But I confess they have lead to debt. Recently paid off all off our mortgages, and am looking to do the same with credit cards

RE: unlearning. the article was pretty mild, and reasonable. I think, on this site, conservative views are assumed to need unlearning. But of course, liberal views need to be unlearned as well. Humility is needed on both sides, but I must say the name-calling of liberals. (Ie; homophobe, transgender-phobe, etc.) given to any who disagree with their view is problematic at best, and often downright evil, for the unwillingness to see another side. If you can’t see the other side, and only think they are evil, you cannot unlearn your own weaknesses. IE: If you do not listen to Fox News or some other neutral source some, you will not know all the truth.

As I recall in the book I read of Ramsey’s, he admitted to the bankruptcy. He gained my respect. And his methods do lead often to success.

Now I know that you have pulling everyones leg! :joy: Glad you have a sense of humor!! :joy:


Not pulling your leg at all. Are you so confident in your news sources that your refuse to listen to the other side? You cannot learn whether you are hearing the truth unless you listen to the other side.

Is Fox always honest. No, it is not. They exaggerate and color the news. CNN, NYT, WaPo and all the others do the same. If you are only listening to one side, whichever it is, you are being fed untruths and you will not know it

Did Covid come from a wet market or a lab? I really don’t care which, but the Times said to think it came from a lab was a conspiracy theory, and there is pretty wide acceptance it was from a lab.

Those 51 former CIA etc types wrote a letter saying Hunter’s lap top was Russian disinformation. Turns out it wasn’t. But the NYT said it was. Hmmm….

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I “:heart:‘d” this comment but I’ve pretty much asked the same question about the sources for Jesus stories and been accused of apostasy for my efforts to know “truth”.

It seems the typical response is either no response or a demand for credulity as the supposedly “holy” sources must be taken on faith and as fact.

However, the fact is that I trust either Fox or the WaPo more than either the OT or NT simply because there is at least some chance of fact checking the latter sources, which is literally and literarily impossible given the displacement of thousands of years and miles from the original settings of the Bible.

For example, Paul’s claim to the Corinthians that 500 people witnessed the resurrection, which would have been virtually impossible to verify when he made this assertion given that those witnesses would have been many days’ journey away from Greece-as well as the fact that the evangelist admits some of his witness are dead-is absolutely impossible for me to falsify some 2,000 years on.

Which skepticism is imminently reasonable unless, of course one wants to believe otherwise and which double standard is precisely why @GeorgeTichy will almost undoubtedly remind me that I’m wasting my time…again.


I really don’t mind skepticism, as we must be allowed to question, or we will not know truth. Those that accept all liberal sources as true but conservative one as false are setting themselves up. But hyper skepticism is a bad way to think.

We have discussed this before.

  1. There were others besides the 500
  2. When you read Acts 2 there were 1000s around Jerusalem at the time of Passover when the resurrection occurred, from all over the world (Acts 2:9-11). The 500 were among them, so would be scattered all over as well. So, one could be fairly easily find someone who had been there and seen Jesus, and such a one could confirm or deny the claim. Your assumption here is that there was not much travel around the Mediterranean but there was actually much travel. There were even tourists visiting the Pyramids, the Temple at Jerusalem which was seen as one of the great wonders of the world, and Sparta, etc.
  3. Claiming there were 500 and there were none is quite risky. If I said 500 saw me jump off the Empire State Building, and you could only find those that denied it would be fairly easy. My feat was so marvelous, that it would be known, Same with Jesus and the resurrection.

And BTW, the NT is the most attested of ancient documents. Much more attested than the Iliad or Cicero. We have more ducmentary evidence for Jesus than many of the Caesars…

…Wasted your time again….