Many do not come to the full knowledge of the Lord God of heaven and earth. They fail to become His people. It is evident from God’s word. Though He speaks the gospel for all to hear, only those willing to walk with Him become His people. He long ago spoke of them; He knew them in His foreknowledge. It is a delight for a person to know that he or she belongs to God and that He has already known them even before their existence. They have not come to know any man or figure, but the mighty God. Their willingness to walk with Him demonstrates they are without misgivings concerning Him. They come into His presence without fear. These stand firm for Him, because they walk the way He gives them. In other words, they finish the work He has given them. And He said, “A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God” (Isa. 10:21).
These are the ones whom God has chosen. They live for Him knowing His mightiness is enabling them to work for His glory. Christians with a full knowledge of God are such people. In fact, it is only granted for them to be such people, as they alone have access to know God through Christ. If you are not one of them, you must aspire to be one. It must be your first objective more than anything else. Or else, what is the point in becoming a Christian and your soul is not driven by the might of God? It is still under condemnation. A Christian is not one who is outwardly, but one having with him the ways of God. The gospel is preached for the simple reason that men have affinity with God. And, those who are willing to walk with Him without any misgivings will glorify the gospel. It is the power of Satan that drives men into the lust of eyes, flesh and the pride of life; and many are losing their affinity with God or have never had affinity with Him because of it. It is very bold for one to say that he or she is a Christian and the might of God is not displayed in them; they are Christians in the flesh. Of people like these the Lord once said, “But as for you, son of man, your fellow citizens who talk about you by the walls and in the doorways of the houses, speak to one another, each to his brother, saying, ‘Come now and hear what the message is which comes forth from the LORD’” (Ezek. 33:30).
Christians that are outwardly are those that hear the Lord’s message, or to be precise gather together to hear His message, but after hearing it do what they please. They do not desire to follow the pattern God places before them. Instead, they pursue ways which they have obtained from the knowledge of the world. They are after the lustful wishes that rest in their hearts and that come out of their mouth. They are often seen as speaking of God and of His goodness, but their hearts are not after His desires. They malign His name among unbelievers. Thus, they are like the Israel, who having many false men did not desire to heed the prophet of God; and, God’s message came to him. Again, they are like the children of Israel that did not accept the messengers of Christ; and, Christ’s message was in them. So, the Jews said, “And Jason has welcomed them, and they all act contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus” (Acts 17:7).
Yes, to a preacher of God and his people there is certainly one King. They have decrees that are from above and their righteousness is above this world. They do not lust, but desire to be blessed by God. They earnestly seek the joy that comes through the Spirit whom God promised to give to those who obey Him. However, to the Christians that are outwardly their king is of the world. They lust at what they have and do not have. They desire many things with wrong motives and they seek their own ways to obtain them. It is simple sense to know that God is able to distinguish the motives that are not of His will. They may obtain their desires, but not to conform them to His will. On the contrary, His people have an advantage in having Jesus as their King. They can desire according to God’s will. In fact, God longs for them to desire according to His will. It is His reward to them for walking intimately with Him. At times He puts His desire in them that they seek His will and by what they desire He measures them up to His will. They are kept from sin.
We are blessed and are Christians if we know that preaching, possessing and seeking Jesus is for ways that makes us stand above the sinful world. Then, we obviously become wiser than the world. See the reason the Spirit gives for God to give Paul a way to walk with Him: “that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself” (Col. 2:2). This is the true joy for Paul. God has supplied him with everything in Christ to finish what he received from Him. Silas too was given a way wherein he was Paul’s fellow worker; Jason received the way to welcome them into his house. What does this imply? That to possess God’s ways is to be led in a manner that serves and brings Him glory. The result is magnificent. People will come to a true knowledge of God’s mystery.
We are cursed and rejected if we act like the Israel that did not desire to walk with God. We may hear His word, even show great eagerness for it, but we cannot bring Him glory until we have His ways. True joy comes from walking in God’s ways. It is a glory to God and an honor to us. His ways are in His word; there are no misgivings in them. If we do not desire to walk with Him, how can we know the ways to His glorification? Whatever are His ways to us, they are for a profit that sustains His kingdom. And, He continues to give them until the day of Christ that as many as possible might come to know Him. For this reason also, we who have known God are constantly renewed with His ways to preserve the mind of Christ. We know that all are not apostles nor preachers nor helpers nor administrators; we are to function as God has given to each one of us. “Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge” (2 Pet. 1:5).
By having God’s ways we possess His precious gifts to lead others to the true knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Jesus Christ. Walking in the ways God has given us is faith and when we supply to it moral excellence to which we add knowledge, in other words when we fulfill God’s way righteously with the knowledge belonging to Christ, we give Him glory. Do not suppose God seeks our moral excellence or knowledge to perform His desire, but He rather seeks what is His moral excellence and knowledge. In this way, the work that is due Him will not be tarnished by the desires and capacities of the flesh. Furthermore, the ways of Satan are battered as if a city has been overcome by a mighty army; the morality and knowledge of the world will be abased. Many Christians being alien to such wisdom have not been able to find ways that make them stand above the sinful world. They are accustomed to seeking their own ways and have no affinity with God. For to those who seek God’s ways Jesus provided the way. “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come” (John 16:13).
God has sent the Spirit of truth that we are distinguished from those who are outwardly Christians and from unbelievers. Observe carefully the words of Jesus. They are life to us who fear God. The Spirit is the mediator between God and us. There are two most important things for us in the words of Jesus. First, the Spirit gives us the truth, which belongs to God. Second, He discloses to us what is to come. In these two are present the advent of our belief in God and the obtaining of His ways. Belief supplies the knowledge of His working nature. It produces the desire to walk with Him. This is the truth to which the Spirit guides us. Obtaining His ways supplies His will providing us with what is to come. In them we find everything pertaining to life and godliness. They are disclosed to us by His Spirit. This is His mightiness that gives us the full knowledge of Him. Therefore, He gave us His word saying, “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh” (Gal. 5:16).