Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (1 Pet 1:2-4)
This is a scripture that we know, and we believe. What happens when we do not have all things that pertain to life and godliness? I am thinking of spouses, children, jobs, homes. More than the necessities of life, but certainly not something that would fall in to the ‘lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, or the pride of life’ category. I know young people who are anxious to find that special someone; couples who are desperate for that ‘pitter patter of tiny feet’; people in the unemployment line who are frantic for work; and the homeless who have been displaced, some through no fault of their own. Where is their ‘all things…?’
Jesus said “you will know the truth, and the truth (that you know) will set you free.” I believe that we lack because we don’t know the particular truth that will set us free. Here are six things, that if we know, will set us free:
- The Spirit of Wisdom
- The Spirit of Revelation
- The enlightenment of Truth
- The hope of His Calling
- The riches of His Glory
- The exceeding Greatness of His Power.
These six things are listed in Ephesians 1:17-19, and it is when we have these six things, that we have ‘all things that pertain to life and godliness.’ We have wisdom. We have revelation. We have the Truth. We have the tools to press in and receive the hope, riches and exceeding greatness of His power. Paul prayed for the believers (that includes us) that we would know (have intimate knowledge of) these six things. We cannot know these things by hearing them in a fleeting moment. We know these things when we spend time in the Word, spend time in His presence, and allow the Holy Spirit to lead us and guide us into all truth.
What normally happens is that we become busy with the day-to-day activities of our present culture (corruption that is in the world through lust) and fail to create the opportunity to receive the six things that Paul prays for us. We do not live in the Garden of Eden, and things are not perfect in our world. We need to handle crisis, we need to tend to the pressing, and we are exhausted at the end of the day. This lifestyle takes very little effort on our part. This culture is self-perpetuating, and it pulls us along.
The life that Jesus offers us, and that Paul prays for us to receive is wrought by effort on our part. We have to want that higher life. We have to carve out the time to attend to God’s Word and the Holy Spirit. We must sacrifice the pressing (attending to the current crisis and drama) for the more urgent (developing the life that is hidden in Christ). My need for the preceding six things must drown out the noise of the trivial (by comparison) day-to-day demands.
I can almost overhear a conversation between Jesus and his Father. They are in heaven, seated together, looking out over their vast creation:
Jesus: Would you just look at that?
Jesus: There she is, trying to work out that problem, but not understanding that I have already provided the answer.
Father: Why doesn’t she know?
Jesus: She has not been listening to the Holy Spirit; She has not made time to hear the truth contained in Your Word. She thinks she is smart enough to do it with common sense.
Father: Really? Did she think that You went to earth for no reason? Doesn’t she get it that you went and destroyed the barriers so that she could have life, and life more abundantly?
Jesus: I guess not… she has not spent the time studying to know that truth, and what that means to her in her situation. She does not know that there is wisdom, revelation and great power already at her disposal….. if she only knew…..
And so it goes…. What we don’t know, really can hurt us. I invite you to join me in making a promise. It is a promise to yourself. It is a promise to your family. Let’s commit to really press in and KNOW these six things. Our lives and those of our loved ones can radically change. The change begins with us
Until next time