“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. Then, through the theologians, they turned Him back into words again.”—Karl Barth
We usually come at God intellectually. It’s one of the great mantras of Evangelicalism. You know the emphasis: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.” We say that if you learn it, then you will live it!
Please hear me: I love to think! I love it when you think. It’s a good thing to think, I’m not saying, it’s not! But hear me, experiencing “Christ in you” is not learned that way! Experiencing Christ in you is learned through God’s power, by His Spirit, as opposed to human wisdom. Consider Paul’s words:
“When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God… No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began.” -- 1 Corinthians 2:1, 7
One commentator said, “This mystery is too profound for human ingenuity.” Another said, “It is wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began.” This is not God’s Plan B. He thought of this long before He even created the world. This is God’s Plan A. He wants us to fully enjoy a mystery previously hidden, long prepared, and unfortunately, missed by most.
“None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. However, as it is written: ‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him’—but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit.” -- 1 Corinthians 2:8
In other words, you can’t hear it, you can’t see it, and you can’t think it. I don’t care how smart you are, none of you can figure out on your own what God has prepared for those who love Him. The Apostle Paul could not be clearer: If you want to experience the mystery, you will not be able to do it coming at it from an intellectual position. It doesn’t work that way.
Dear Father, my brain can only take me so far. I thank You for good doctrine. I thank You for teachers and classes and books. But I need more than that. I need You. I need more than intellectual understanding; I want to experience this mystery. I want to experience the reality of being in You, and You in me. Make the Truth of Your Word come alive to me. Empower my heart, for I desire to walk in the strength of Your Spirit, not in the power of my own flesh. God, take me deeper, by faith, into the mystery of Your Son, Jesus Christ.
Listen to Pete, Jill & Stuart Briscoe on the Telling the Truth broadcast at OnePlace.com
God is great. God is good. It’s sung as a hymn and taught to children as a prayer. But we’re not always sure we believe it! Why? Because of suffering. We see real devastation in our own families and across the world and think, “Either God is not so great, or He’s not so good.”
In this 2-message series called Making Sense of Suffering, Stuart and Jill Briscoe turn to Scripture to show you why God allows suffering, what good can come from it, and what happens when you accept the unacceptable.
Making Sense of Suffering is our gift to thank you for helping others experience real Life in the midst of their suffering. So please request your copy when you give to Telling the Truth today.