Before we ask the question, ‘how can we know God?’, I’m going to give a few more reasons why we’ve got to know God, and know Him urgently. Throughout this year, If God leads, I hope to continue sharing with you what I’m learning as I read through the Bible and Beeke and Smalley’s Reformed Systematic Theology. I’ll explain why I’ve decided to read these very thick books in another episode down the line.
Beeke and Smalley provide four substantial reasons why we’ve got to know God.
First, knowing God is our highest privilege, the best thing we could ever do with our lives. In Jeremiah, God says,
“Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the LORD.” (Jeremiah 9:23-24).
What does our generation boast about? How smart we are? How strong we are? How rich we are? Who boasts that they know the Lord? This is what God delights in. Charles Spurgeon, the great preacher said, “Nothing will so enlarge the intellect, nothing will so magnify the whole soul of man, as a devout, earnest, continued investigation of the great subject of the Deity.”
Second, knowing God is the heart of the covenant. It’s the heart of God’s will, the very thing He desires and promises for His people. In another part of Jeremiah, God says,
“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And no longer shall each one teach his neighbour and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. “ (Jeremiah 31:33-34)
God wants us to know Him. What are we waiting for?
Third, knowing God is the essence of eternal life. Jesus says,
“And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” (John 17:3)
Most of the time, we get ‘eternal life’ wrong. Eternal life isn’t about living forever in heaven, chilling and having a worry-free holiday forever. If that’s all heaven is for you, you’re missing out. Eternal life is about getting to know God more and more forever into eternity because that is far better than anything we could possibly imagine. And that eternal life doesn’t only start when we die. It can start now. Start living now, start knowing God now, and keep doing so into eternity for your ultimate joy.
Lastly, knowing God is the engine for holiness. If we’ve decided to follow Christ, we’ve been set apart from sin to a life of holiness. How do we be holy? Are we tired of trying to obey all the rules, trying to be happy and holy at the same time? Being holy doesn’t come from willpower to obey all God’s laws. It comes from changed hearts who are transformed by a growing relationship with God. 2 Peter 1:3 says,
“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.” (2 Peter 1:3)
Getting to know God will crush our pride, subdue our lusts and bring us to a growing love for God, and a fruitful life of good works pleasing to Him.
Do we want to know God? Let’s get to know Him, and make that our urgent priority
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