February 13, 2015
The Greatest Knowledge
By Skip Heitzig
Knowledge today is growing at an amazing rate. Someone estimated that if you took all of the accumulated knowledge from the beginning of history until the year 1845 and represented that by one inch, then all of the knowledge added from 1845 to 1945, a mere hundred years later, would be three inches. What we gained from 1945 to 1975 would be the height of the Washington Monument. How much more we've added since 1975 is anybody's guess!
But that's just informational knowledge. What about spiritual knowledge? What about knowing God? That's what Charles Spurgeon called the loftiest of all sciences, the greatest of all knowledge.
In two verses in John 14, Jesus used the word know or known four times. "If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him" (v. 7). "Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip?" (v. 9). In this context, the word means to have a deeper, fuller comprehension of a person's identity. That's how Christ was using it here, because the disciples didn't truly know who He was.
One of our roadblocks in really knowing who God is, is all the baggage that we bring into the relationship. Our upbringing, our culture, our customs, and our worldview all form a lens by which we view God. We say things like, "Well, I have always pictured God like...." But who you think God is and who God really is may not necessarily be the same. They may be miles apart.
A second roadblock is the demand for some visible, physical manifestation. Philip said, "Show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us" (v. 8). Wanting to see God is a basic longing, and it's the basis, at least in part, for our worship. Our worship experiences are meant to whet our appetite for the day when our faith will become sight, when we see God face to face.
And this longing to see God is part of the root of idolatry. We think, If only God could be visible so that I could relate to Him, and we create some image and worship that. It's what people have done for thousands of years—even the children of Israel in the Old Testament.
But we understand who God is by who He reveals Himself to be. "No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him" (John 1:18).
Here's my challenge: evaluate your time, not so much in what you do for God but the time you spend with God. Don't be so busy working for God that you neglect just being with Him. Even church pastors can be guilty of that.
Fellowship with Him by being in His presence through worship, prayer, and the Word. I believe one of the strongest signs of a real child of God is that person's hunger to learn more about God.
So, what is your master passion? Is it knowing God? Is it to be conformed into His image? I pray that you might desire to know Him above all else.
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