Tag Archives: knowing God

Full Knowledge and Consent

Who said, “…neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain…“?  Martin Luther King, Jr. He was quoting an amazing prophecy of Isaiah who had been given a peek at God’s endgame.  He saw the future we yearn for, the Day of no more tears, no disease or death.  The day when humans somehow can live in perfect harmony and peace.  

How, somehow?  Hear it straight from Isaiah as he received it from God:  

They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.  (Isaiah 11:9)

Knowing, in Bible speak, is frequently a term for intercourse, the deepest and most intimate expression of a relationship of love. When we attain full knowledge of God, when we know Him fully, our hearts and actions will effortlessly resonate with His.  It will be the fulfillment of Jesus’ prayer, “…Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”  ​There will be real peace and joy.

Even though our capacity for knowing God, knowing Jesus, is limited, the day of full knowledge and consent is truly coming.  Isaiah saw a vision of it.  Martin Luther King, Jr. wept for it.

For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.  (1 Corinthians 13:12)


Once, I met Bob Hope.  Shook his hand.  But I didn’t know him.  There is a big difference, one you want to pay attention to when it comes to Jesus.  If all you have done is meet Him, you are really missing out.

Peter wrote that through our knowledge of Him, grace and peace would be multiplied, provided in abundant and increasing measure.(2 Peter 1:2).  How would you like to have a reservoir of peace like that?  It comes through really knowing Jesus.

It gets better.  Peter continued to say:

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.  (2Peter 1:3-4)

All those astonishing gifts and promises are available to us “though our knowledge of Him“.  Take some time to reflect on that paragraph, considering how valuable they would be to you.  You may be moved to ask Jesus, “Lord, please show me how to know You better…”

Hint:  Peter gives some great advice about that in the next few verses.

Know Better

You say, “I’ll pray for you,” but then, what do you ask in your prayers?  “Lord, please bless Amy, please heal her foot…”?  Something like that?  Me too, most of the time.  That’s what makes this prayer of Paul so startling and attractive to me:

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.  (Ephesians 1:17)

Here’s my hunch:  When we need prayer, when we struggle or suffer or lack certainty, if we could somehow really know God as He truly is, know Him at that moment of need, it would make things much better.  It might satisfy us.  I suspect Paul understood that from personal experience.

Chew on that.  See if it doesn’t taste good and nourish.

Believing is Seeing

Online dating is risky.  We imagine the person with whom we have connected, but rarely get it right.  When we actually meet, it can be quite a shock.  Believing in God is similar.  The God of our imagination may be very different from the character and personality of the real God.  This can be disillusioning, to say the least.  I know a man who genuinely believed that God would never allow anything bad to happen to him.  When tough times clobbered him, it was a real crisis for his faith.  He told me he no longer believed in God.  I suggested he consider if perhaps the God he no longer believed in was not  the real God.  This is a common problem.  You frequently hear people say, “My God wouldn’t let that happen…”  Understandable, since no one has ever seen God.  Our relationship with Him is a bit like online dating.

Except for this:  God sent His Son.  A “son,” in first century Jewish thinking, was someone who embodied the character and personality of another person.  Jesus called a couple of his disciples “Sons of Thunder,” because their personalities resembled rolling thunder.  He spoke of how His followers might become “Sons of light,” might take on character traits of His “light.”   To say Jesus was the “Son” of God was to say He was the embodiment of God’s character and personality.

As the author of Hebrews stated it,

“He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature…”  –  (Hebrews 1:3a)

Jesus affirmed this.  He said, 

“Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.”    –  (John 14:10b)

Therefore, our belief in God will align with Who God really is, what He is really like, as we believe in Jesus.  To put it another way, if we say we believe in God, but do not accept Jesus, then the God of our belief does not really match the character and personality of the True God.  That is what Jesus meant by these words:

“Whoever believes in me, believes not in me but in him who sent me. And whoever sees me sees him who sent me.”  –  (John 12:44b-45)

If you believe in the real God, not merely an imaginary god, you believe in the One Who so loved the world so deeply that He sent Jesus, His Son.  And, in your belief in Him, have attained eternal life. (Paraphrase of John 3:16)