That I Might Know Him

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That I Might Know Him

October 21, 2014 at 9:31 AM

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Our time was prophesied about in Daniel 12:4...

“But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”

 

There are two characteristics of our busyness - running to and fro and knowledge.  Churches and Christians have had access to more information on how to do Christianity, than ever before. TV, Radio, Internet, study bibles, books. Exceptional preachers. How much have you spent on DVDs, cds, and tapes. Add to that, 1000’s of conferences, more great information, and teachings on how to build a church, and evangelizing the world.

Yet the church, the Body of Christ has never been more divided, in many places the great commission struggling. In NZ the percentage of Christians is not increasing. We are losing the war. We need to ask what is going on. One thing we can conclude, knowledge in itself is not the answer. If it was the world be reached by now.

 

What is the key? 

The key is a person, and His name is Jesus. Jesus is the key. It is not information. We have run after the tree of knowledge instead of tree of life. We can have a lot of knowledge, yet not really know God. Look at what I believe is the greatest key to life and success.

 

The apostle Paul is probably the greatest apostle of history, the man who received more revelation than anyone else, wrote a good part of  the New Testament, received the message of salvation by direct revelation from God. He was also very successful, reaching the nations for Christ, and saw outstanding miracles. He spoke a lot about peace, joy, and contentment.  A question worth asking is what was the key to his life.

 

Look at deepest cry of his heart.

Phil 3:10 -11

‘That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,  if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.

 

Paul’s greatest desire and longing was to know God more and more. He knew that knowledge was not the answer although he was highly educated. He realized the key to life was not information but a person. That person was the greatest person to ever live, name above every other name.

Even though Paul was a huge achiever he was devoted to a person not a cause.

Paul spoke these words 6 years before his death. He had known the Lord 30 years, seen the Lord many times, had visions, been to third heavens, and still his cry was to know God more intimately. We must never plateau in our walk with God, always to have an onward vision to know God more.

Billy Graham said Christianity was like riding a bike, unless your moving forward you will fall off.

 

The Greek word used for knowledge is ginosko, which means a personal knowledge, knowing someone intimately and personally. There are levels at which we know people; you know your boss at one level, friend at another level and then husband or wife.

It’s as you live with a person that you really get to know them. Before you got married you thought you knew the person, then you woke and thought, oh my!!! What have I done? Quote - every one is normal until you get to know them.

As you get to know a person you discover what pleases them and then you go out of your way to do that. Out of knowing God, Paul then had a great desire to please Him.

1 Corinthians 7:32

‘But I want you to be without care. He who is unmarried cares for the things of the Lord—how he may please the Lord.’

 

One aspect of knowing God, is knowing His character. What is He like?

Exodus 34:6

And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth’,

  1. Merciful – means full of compassion. Mercy is considered the highest attribute of God. In the tabernacles of Moses, the mercy seat a thin layer of gold covered the Ark of the Covenant, which contained the law. Mercy is above the law. Even when we do wrong, God can show mercy.
  2. Gracious - means to bend or stoop in kindness to an inferior. A gracious person sees the needs of others and does something.
  3. Longsuffering - Hebrew meant, one who has a long nose. Hebrews felt someone with a short nose would breath very rapidly and get angry quickly. If he had long nose, breath slower and not get angry so quickly. Our God is very patient and takes a long time to get angry. God waited 120 years in the days of Noah for people to turn from their wickedness. Some people see their getting angry at a situation as a virtue. To know God more we need to become like Him.
  4. Abounding in goodness - means loving kindness. Showing pity to those in need. Also means incapable of doing evil to others.
  5. Abounding in truth - Jesus is the truth. The truth will set you free. We need to be people who speak the truth inside and out.

John 17 :17

Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.

 What God says, He will do. He is totally reliable, and faithful. We need to be people of truth. Always do as we say.

 

Benefits Of Knowing God

1. Strength  

Daniel 11:32

‘Those who do wickedly against the covenant he shall corrupt with flattery; but the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.’

 

You will have strength to survive the greatest crisis.

 

2. Do exploits for God - It’s how the bible greats did it. Abraham walked with God. David was a man after God’s own heart. Moses was a friend of God.

Mark 3:13 - 15

‘And He went up on the mountain and called to Him those He Himself wanted. And they came to Him. Then He appointed twelve, that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach, and to have power to heal sicknesses and to cast out demons:’

 

When Jesus first called his apostles he made it clear that He called them for three purposes. Firstly, that they might be with Him. Secondly, send them out to preach. And thirdly, minister in power of God. But first they were to be with Jesus. 

 

3. Fulfill all the will of God - Paul who focused on knowing God could say I have fought the good fight, finished the race, kept the faith. Only as we grow in knowing God will we be able to fight and win, finish our course and keep the faith despite all life throws at us. Knowing Him that’s the key.

 

4. Less stress and struggle

Isaiah 40:31

But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.
 

Eagles very rarely flap their wings. They are created to ride the wind, soarly to heavens. We are created to ride the wind of the Spirit - soar to the heights. Out of knowing God we discern wind drafts of the Spirit. In contrast let’s not be like ducks. It all looks smooth on the surface as they move across the water but under water their feet are going like crazy.

 

5. More answers to prayer - prayer is all about relationship with God.

6.  Life’s greatest goal of knowing God can never be taken from you

Paul wrote from a prison, of His great hunger to know God, 6 years before he died. Nothing could stop him pursuing His greatest goal in life. No one and no circumstances can take the pursuit of God from you.

 

How to know God more –

i. Make it your number one goal in life

ii. Daily time alone with God. Get alone with God

iii. Times of stillness and waiting on God. Ps 46v10 be still know I am God

iv. Sacrifice - Paul was willing to forsake all to know God more. 

 

Knowing God is the greatest of all. May God help us all to know Him more. 



Tags: prayer knowing God friendship call of God
Category: Articles

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