Worthy (2): Knowledge

In closing my last article, I spoke of how, although we know so much about God, there is still so much more for us to learn. As we gain knowledge, we not only learn how to better give God what He is worthy of, but also our knowledge of Him is something He deserves. It is important that we distinguish what kind of knowledge to gain. “All heathen wisdom is but folly. Of all knowledge, the knowledge of God is the principal. There is no true knowledge without godliness” (Bridges). It is not heathen wisdom, such as the knowledge of things here below, but true knowledge of God that is important. God is worthy of knowledge first, so that we may better praise Him, second, so we may reverently and affectionately obey His law, and third, so we can better love Him.

As mentioned in the previous article, our praise comes from an acknowledgment of what God has done for us. To be able to render any kind of praise to God we must have true knowledge of Him. When we consider that God is worthy, which the Bible says many times, (II Samuel 22:4, Psalm 18:3, Rev. 4:11, 5:9, 12) we consider the weight of God. God is worthy. God is worthy of so much above and beyond what we can ever render to Him. Yet, as children of God we have the desire to bring our best fruits and our best sacrifices before God as did the children of Abraham. It is only natural then that we yearn to know God better and to understand all that Christ has suffered for us. The more we learn of Christ’s death and God’s forgiveness of us, the more we realize we are undeserving and God is so merciful. As we realize this more and more we can better praise God for His work.

In Proverbs 1:7, we read of knowledge and its connection to our obedience of God’s law. We read that “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.” The fear of the Lord is “the affectionate reverence by which the child of God bends himself humbly and carefully to his Father’s law” (Bridges).  Knowledge comes from and is obedience to God’s decree of His command. We must know God’s command and then we will have a mind that is obedient to Him.

To truly know God is to love Him. John points out the importance of knowing God in I John 4:7-8. John says that one who loves God will inevitably have knowledge of God and if one does not love God then he surely will not have any knowledge of God. We need knowledge to love God. That is why God gives us His perfect book, and reveals Himself to us with all the creation around us. We must know God is God, the God of infinite perfections, to love Him. It is important we do not make up a God, but we must know the One true God for who He is. When we truly know who God is we will be overflowing with love towards Him. We will be as the lame beggar who began walking and leaping and praising God when He first learned the name of Christ.

God is worthy that we must render so much unto Him. We know He is worthy of our gratitude, knowledge, praise, obedience, love and yet so much more than that too. Most importantly we must walk in a life of gratitude towards God which walk will be filled with learning about God and much more. How great a joy and blessing that God has shared His name with us so we may know Him!

Luke Christian Potjer

Bridges, Charles. “Proverbs”. pp. 3-4. 1846, First Banner of Truth Trust edition.

Ready to Grow in the Fear of God

We must come to the worship service tomorrow ready to grow in the fear of God. Why? This is the reason: When we have the knowledge of who God really is and why we must fear Him, all of our other fears and concerns will be allayed. When we understand how great our God is, we will earnestly desire to praise and reverence Him at all times. David understood this: “O fear the LORD, ye His saints: for there is no want to them that fear Him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing. Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the LORD” (Psalm 34:9-11).

What is the fear of the Lord? Let’s take a look at how the Bible defines it.

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Proverbs 1:7).

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever” (Psalm 110:10).

“Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding” (Job 28:28).

“The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate” (Proverbs 8:13).

“The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death” (Proverbs 14:27).

To sum up these verses, the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge and wisdom, hatred of evil, and the fountain of everlasting life. Fearing God is coming to an understanding of who He is: finding out how holy, just, merciful, and perfect Jehovah is, and how we really cannot even comprehend how great He is. We can only come to this knowledge by the grace God gives us, and even that fact humbles us and causes us to bow before our almighty Lord.

The world we live in, however, constantly tells us to forsake the fear of the Lord. We are tempted daily to turn our eyes from God and instead fear man. The culture of victimization that we live in shows this plainly. How common isn’t it to say that it’s the other person’s fault? “They did it, they made me do it.” This is basically saying that our behavior is controlled by other people. We are succumbing to the fear of man, looking to man to solve problems instead of looking up and putting our trust in God. When we fear man, many problems ensue: we worry about what others think about us, we love ourselves instead of loving God, and sometimes we even demand answers from God.

Because we are so prone to wander from God, we must constantly seek to grow in the fear of the Lord. How can we grow in this knowledge? Every Sunday we have the opportunity to grow—and not only is it an opportunity, but it is a requirement for God’s people. Our Lord requires us to come to the worship service ready to grow in His fear. Using His servants that preach His Word, He calls us to learn who He is, how needy we are, and why we must worship Him. We cannot come to worship with a heart that doesn’t want to grow anymore. Instead, we must be eager and longing to know our God more and more so we can put our trust in Him alone.

Be ready tomorrow, my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ! Prepare your hearts to grow in the fear of the Lord!

Grace Medema

Meditation on Proverbs 4:25-27

“Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil” (Proverbs 4:25-27).

As I ponder this, I’m reminded of the way in which sin always seems to work. It always starts off as just a little swerve. You start off completely focused on the things of the Lord, yet something that attracts your flesh catches your attention. You say to yourself, “just a little swerve to the left won’t hurt.” And before you know it you’ve crashed into a ditch. James explains this experience in James 1:14-15: “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.  Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”

What then is this path you need to walk? What do your need to gaze your eyes upon? What should fill your thoughts?

“Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Psalms 16:11).

The path you must walk is the path to life. The glory of God is what you must gaze upon. True, eternal, lasting pleasure, is what you must be convinced of to fight the lies of the temporary pleasures of this world. Those who walk this path are those who are clothed with the righteousness of Christ and it’s these same ones who enter into the gates of righteousness.

“Open to me the gates of righteousness: I will go into them, and I will praise the Lord :  This gate of the Lord , into which the righteous shall enter” (Psalm 118:19-20).

“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:   Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matthew 7:13-14).

The wide path is the path of lust, the path of selfish desire, the path of the lie of temporary pleasure. It’s the easy path, the path of the world, the path of human autonomy, the path of death. Yet for the few, for the righteous, for those who walk the difficult path, who gaze straight at the narrow gate, is life everlasting and true pleasures for evermore.

Mike Murrell