In Awe of Jesus Christ
- Friday, March 20, 2009
March 20, 2009
One reason to admire and trust Jesus above all other persons is that he knows more than anyone else. He knows all people thoroughly, their hearts and their thoughts. "He knew all men" (John 2:24). "You, Lord, . . . know the hearts of all men" (Acts 1:24). "And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, 'Why are you thinking evil in your hearts?'" (Matthew 9:4). There is no one who perplexes Jesus. No thought or action is unintelligible to him. He knows its origin and end. The most convoluted psychotic and the most abstruse genius are open and laid bare to his understanding. He understands every motion of their minds.
Jesus not only knows all people thoroughly as they were and are today, he also knows what people will think and do tomorrow. He knows all things that will come to pass. "Jesus, [knew] all the things that were coming upon Him" (John 18:4). On the basis of this knowledge, he foretold numerous things that his friends and enemies would do. "[Jesus said] 'There are some of you who do not believe.' For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him" (John 6:64). "From now on," he said, "I am telling you before it comes to pass, so that when it does occur, you may believe that I am" (John 13:19). The reason he foretold these things, he explains, is so that we might know that "he is" - is what? That he is the divine Son of God. "I am" is the name for God in Exodus 3:14 and the designation of deity in Isaiah 43:10. Jesus knows all that will come to pass, and, to help our faith, he says, "Behold, I have told you in advance" (Matthew 24:25).
Jesus simply knows all things. Thus his disciples said, truly, "Now we know that You know all things, and have no need for anyone to question You; by this we believe that You came from God" (John 16:30). The extent of Jesus' knowledge was a compelling warrant for faith in his divine origin. At the end of his time on earth Jesus pressed Peter, "'Simon, son of John, do you love Me?' Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, 'Do you love Me?' And he said to Him, 'Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You' (John 21:17). Peter did not conclude from Jesus' knowledge of his heart that he knew all things; rather he concluded from the omniscience of Jesus that he knew his heart. "You know all things," is a general and unqualified statement that John's gospel presses on our minds.
The greatest thing that can be said of Jesus' knowledge is that he knows God perfectly. We know God partially and imperfectly. Jesus knows him like no other being knows him. He knows him the way an omniscient Person knows himself. "All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him" (Matthew 11:27). No one but Jesus knows the Father immediately, completely and perfectly. Our knowledge of the Father depends wholly on Jesus' gracious revelation; it is derivative and partial and imperfect.
Nothing greater can be said about the knowledge of Jesus than that he knows God perfectly. All reality outside God is parochial compared to the infinite Reality that God is. What God has made is like a toy compared to the complexity and depth of what God is. All the sciences that scratch the surface of the created universe are the mere ABCs compared to Christ's exhaustive knowledge of the created universe. And this knowledge of the created universe is as a dewdrop on a blade of grass compared to the ocean of knowledge that Jesus has of the Being of God himself. God is infinite. The universe is finite. Knowledge of the infinite is infinite. Therefore to know God, as Jesus knows God, is to have infinite knowledge.
Therefore let us bow down and worship Jesus Christ. If we are impressed with the scholarship of man and the achievements of scientific knowledge, then let us not play the fool by trumpeting a tiny chirp and ignoring the thunder clap of omniscience. Jesus alone is worthy of our highest admiration. Jesus alone is worthy of our trust. He can show us the Father (Matthew 11:27). He can give us irresistible wisdom (Luke 21:15). He can see how to make all things work together for our good (Romans 8:28). None of his judgments about anything is ever mistaken (John 8:16). He teaches the way of God with infallible truthfulness (Matthew 22:16). Trust him. Admire him. Follow him.
In awe of Jesus,
© Desiring God 1999. Used with permission.
Permissions: You are permitted and encouraged to reproduce and distribute this material in any format provided that you do not alter the wording in any way and do not charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction. For web posting, a link to this document on our website is preferred. Any exceptions to the above must be approved by Desiring God.Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By John Piper. © Desiring God. Website: desiringGod.org
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