God is the supreme thinker. He possesses an omniscient quantity and quality of knowledge. He is the intelligent king, architect, economist, and philosopher of creation.
Indeed, he is the expert in every realm of knowledge. He is the ontological genius, savant, virtuoso, and mastermind. He is the unassailable specialist of every kind of intelligence. Moreover, he understands in depth and breadth each realm of knowledge in every language and at each level of development.
He knows how to coordinate means and ends, and cause and effect. His diagnosis and prescription is always correct. He builds whatever he designs, and his ideas always produce positive results. And he embodies intellectual virtue in infinite degree: courage, carefulness, fair-mindedness, curiosity, honesty, and humility are always in evidence as the paradigmatic thinker and doer.
In all these ways, therefore, God was Adam’s intellectual exemplar. He modeled for Adam and Eve how to represent his interests in the garden as apprentice rulers, builders, investors, and thinkers. He wanted his vice-regents to care for, protect, and enlarge his property for his name’s sake and the benefit of his creatures (Gen 1:26‒28).
So, as you can see, the intellectual capacities that God has given you are very important. As you discover, develop and use them, you advance God’s plan for creation.
But intelligence is multi-faceted. There are various kinds of cognitive abilities and not merely the type measured in standard IQ tests. The psychologist Howard Gardner suggested a nine-fold theory of intelligence:
Naturalistic intelligence: Naturalistic intelligence describes people who are sensitive to the natural world. They enjoy being outside, nurturing and exploring the environment.
Musical intelligence: People with musical intelligence have an excellent sense of rhythm and the ability to recognize tone and pitch. More often than not they play an instrument or are involved in music as a profession.
Logical–mathematical intelligence: People with this type of intelligence are excellent at maths and working with numbers. They can recognize patterns easily and work out processes in a logical manner.
Existential intelligence: People with high levels of existential intelligence ask questions similar to why are we here? They are often deeply philosophical thinkers and they have the capacity to look for answers to questions bigger than themselves.
Interpersonal intelligence: People with this type of intelligence are often good at reading verbal and non-verbal cues as well as determining temperament and mood. They feel empathy easily. Often this type of intelligence can be found in politicians, social workers, life coaches and psychologists.
Linguistic intelligence: People with high linguistic intelligence are very good at putting their feelings and thoughts into words in order to make others understand them. They are drawn to activities such as reading, writing and public speaking.
Bodily–kinaesthetic intelligence: People high in bodily–kinesthetic intelligence have an excellent sense of timing and a great mind-body coordination. They are able to use their bodies to convey feelings and ideas and, often take up roles in dance, sports or medicine.
Intra–personal intelligence: Intra-personal intelligence refers to an understanding of oneself and the human condition as a whole. Philosophers, spiritual leaders, psychologist and writers usually have high intra-personal intelligence.
Spatial intelligence: Spatial intelligence is defined as the ability to consider things in three dimensions. These people can be found in professions such as architecture, design and map reading.
Think about these kinds of intelligence. Discover yours. Embrace it. Nurture it. And use it to God’s glory, mankind’s blessings, and your personal fulfillment.