Friday, 1 March 2013

The Power of Spiritual Education

"It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible." (George Washington)

The greater our knowledge, the higher our influence on others

“The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.” (1 Corinthians 2:14 ESV)

What does the Bible itself say regarding the importance of Education? A wisest king ever lived-in History, said in Proverbs 23:12 “Apply your heart to discipline (Education) and your ears to words of knowledge.” In another words Listen to instruction and do your best to learn. And “For the Lord gives skillful and godly Wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding”. (Proverbs 2:6)

Education is the foundation for a good and fulfilling life, setting the individual on a path of personal fulfillment, economic security and societal contribution. Today the world of knowledge and competence is in a constant state of unrest. The same can be said for the life of visions, aspirations, and dreams. For many centuries it had been considered that education in general and academia in particular were responsible for the moral and social development of students and for bringing together diverse groups for the common good. Is this still the case?  The key that unlocks the door to building of a better world is SPIRITUAL EDUCATION. But, not any education and surely not the education mostly on offer currently, but a truly different form of education, an education grounded in Holy Scripture. Let us consider to study and comprehend the power of Spiritual Education in this section.

Bible begins with one of the most profound statements ever made in the hearing of men. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1) This verse begins with the greatest observable knowledge known to man: the existence of the two imperative realms, the heavens and the earth, (Genesis 1:1); and it links to that the greatest knowledge made known by revelation: the existence of a God who creates. There is thus brought together in this simple verse at the beginning of the Bible the recognition of the two great sources of human comprehension: Natural knowledge, which is discoverable by the five senses of our physical life; Jesus gave us a classical illustration about natural knowledge in Matthew 24:32 “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near.”(ESV) and Revelation knowledge, which is discoverable only by a mind and heart illuminated and taught by the Spirit of God. These things "are spiritually discerned," says the Apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 2:14).Both of these sources of knowledge are from God, and each of them is a means of knowing God.

The scientist who studies nature is searching ultimately for God. Nature is designed to teach us certain knowledge about God, but revelation is designed to lead us to the God about whom nature speaks. Thus the two are complementary.  They are not contradictory in any sense, but complete one another. This is why psalmist says “The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship.” (Psalm 19:1) Dr.  Frederick Arthur Filby , said “The material world is designed to produce parallels -- parables -- of the spiritual. There is indeed a spiritual law operating in the natural world, and God put us on a planet where light is separated from darkness for our spiritual education as well as for our physical needs. There is a spiritual, as well as a physical reason, for the pattern of creation and he who divorces science from true religion will never be able to come to a real understanding of the world

The first important passage about importance of learning is found in the Old Testament is Deuteronomy 6:4-9, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.” (NIV) This verse starts with a command to hear what God has to say. This also points to the imperative of the next two verses that, in a nutshell, are about memorizing and knowing, teaching and applying God’s Word. God is commanding us to teach ourselves and our children His Word, so that it penetrates our hearts, minds and will—that is, every aspect of who we are. And, then, we are to write it down and bind it to all our daily aspects of life. That call is still for us today. Apostle Paul made it clear in his letter to Colossians.

 “ Let the word [spoken by] Christ (the Messiah) have its home [in your hearts and minds] and dwell in you in [all its] richness, as you teach and admonish and train one another in all insight and  intelligence and wisdom [in spiritual things, and as you sing] psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, making melody to God with [His] grace in your hearts.”(Colossians 3:16AMP)

The second important passage in the New testament  is 2 Timothy 3:14-17, “But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (NIV) In this passage, Paul gives us a similar call to heed God’s Word. Call to scrutinize, understand, and then apply Scripture. This is the basic inductive precept. This passage is not an instruction to give the Bible the occasional “once over.” It is the clear, uncompromising call to continue in our studies constantly and passionately.

These  Scriptures call us to live our lives as pleasing to our God, as countless other passages do, such as Proverbs 1:7, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.” which is the understanding and vigorous reverence of God. It is not the fear a child has of darkness or what is under the bed. It is the wow, the wonder, awe, and majesty of God. And, this understanding is wisdom to deal with life, to make the most out of what He gives us in our gifts and opportunities.  

Many people wonder why such a strong emphasis is placed on a book that was written thousands of years ago. How could its ancient writings possibly be relevant today?”First of all be ought to recognize that the Bible is the only infallible and authoritative revelation of God. It is God's word to man. It is direct revelation from the Creator of the universe to His creation. Although there are numerous reasons why the Bible is important, here are just a few to consider:

Bible itself declares that “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.”(2 Timothy 3:16NLT)

Bible is the established, Eternal principles for our comprehensive Education. “Your word, O LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens.” (Psalm 119:89) Jesus said “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.”(Matthew 24:35)
When Jesus walked on the earth, He taught the people by parables.  Parables are special stories because they teach us a lesson and help us understand more about God and His constitution.  The Bible tells us in Matthew 7:24-27 that Jesus told a story about two men who built two houses.  The wise man builds his house on the rock and the foolish man builds his house on the sand. This illustration gives us an insight about making wise choices in life. Then Jesus said, "Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24-25.) The true education is based on the Word of God: Understanding the foundational nature of Truth in God’s word is essential to building a Biblical worldview for every Christians. Biblical Truth is as indispensable to living for Christ as a sure foundation is indispensable to supporting a building so it will stand firm during a severe storm. The never-changing Truth of God’s word will support a Biblical worldview through the storms and trials of everyday life and withstand the worldly attacks we will face at academia and beyond.
One of the marvels of the Bible is that it uses language that communicates with people of the most primitive and limited understanding, while at the same time it still has significance, and inexhaustible meaning, to the most scholarly and intellectual of men. It addresses itself with equal simplicity to all classes of mankind. No other book has that distinction. One of the greatest influences that have led and made me think the most and changed the way I see the world is the Holy Bible. From this greatest book; I learned that this is the only book in the world that offers objective evidence to be the Word of God and gives real proof of its divine inspiration. The Bible, more than any other book, has influenced untold numbers of people over the course of centuries and continues to be the number one bestselling book of all time.

The Bible is the only book that offers Eternal salvation as a free gift and contains the greatest moral standards of any book. It would be impossible to claim to be an educated person in today's world without having at least some familiarity with the events contained in this book. Actually, all of the events contained in this book should be known by everyone. The Bible is worth all other books which have ever been printed. God has commanded Christian parents to teach their children about Him and about the way of salvation. Because God has created and rules over everything, the study of anything should lead students toward a better knowledge of Him (John 17:3). Through this kind of study, with the Lord’s help, the student gains wisdom to avoid the sin of the past, improve upon the thinking of forefathers, and to instill godliness in future generations.
The Bible will keep you from sin, or sin will keep you from the Bible. Psalmist says “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. that I might not sin against thee;” (Psalm 119:11) the word of God is a most powerful antidote against sin, when it has a place in the heart; not only the precepts of it forbid sin, but the promises of it influence and engage to purity of heart and life, and to the perfecting of holiness in the fear of the Lord; and all the doctrines of grace in it effectually teach the saints to deny all sin and worldly lusts, and to live a holy life and conversation. Within the covers of the Bible are the answers for all the ethical and other problems men face. 

 “Ethics” comes from the Greek word for morals. Morals are principles or standards of conduct that define the difference between good and evil, and right and wrong in the sphere of human action. Ethics seeks to determine the “ought” dimension of life, i.e., what we ought to do when faced with moral decisions and dilemmas. Therefore, the study of ethics is learning how to make proper moral judgments and live righteously before God and man. The very nature of ethics requires systematized moral thinking, i.e., ethics requires critical thinking that not only defines what we ought to do in each situation, but places our moral decisions in the context of a coherent ethical philosophy that self-consciously acts on the basis of a recognized standard. “Christian ethics” refers (or at least it should) to the ethical system presented in Holy Scripture, and another name for Christian ethics could be “biblical ethics.” Spiritual  ethics is a distinct discipline which seeks to answer the question of good and evil in human conduct in every sphere of government (personal, family, church, and state), and in every aspect of life (work, business, the arts, education, war, economics, entertainment, science, medicine, and law) on the basis of God’s word-revealed law ( Bible).

The word “education” is based on a Latin term that means to lead forth, bring up, or train. Noah Webster defines “education” as: “The bringing up, as of a child, instruction; formation of manners. Education comprehends all that series of instruction and discipline which is intended to enlighten the understanding, correct the temper, and form the manners and habits of youth, and fit them for usefulness in their future stations.” The central idea of education is not the accumulation of knowledge and facts, or of mere technical skills. Though education includes these things, education aims to train the student in all facets of his being so that he will be prepared to live life successfully. Central to a proper education is training, as Webster puts it, in “manners.” What does he mean by “manners”? Manners, according to Webster, refers to “behavior; conduct; course of life; in a moral sense.” In other words, education involves training in ethics.

 Since all of life involves moral judgments, we cannot dispense with the questions of ethics in any thing we do. You cannot have a Christian approach to science, economics, or the arts without grounding the pursuit and application of these disciplines in biblical ethics. Mere knowledge and technology may determine what we can do, but in themselves they cannot answer the question of what we ought to do; for this we must have spiritual ethics, i.e., a biblical system of ethics that can determine on the authority of God’s Word what we ought to do with our scientific knowledge and technical skills.

Question we need to ask is Do we have a place in our curriculum to teach our people an explicitly Biblical system of ethics? If we do not, and if we claim to be Christian educators, then we must provide a place for instruction in Spiritual ethics. This is an absolute necessity in the world we live in. The moral sphere is in near total chaos in the wider culture, and the church is not far behind. If Christians are going to live lives to the glory of God, walk a path of righteousness, and be a light to the world, they need to know how to determine good and evil and how to answer moral questions from the Holy Bible.

The Bible is the only credible guide either as to the real relationship between man and the earth and the great Creator of both or concerning the purpose of the creation of both. Bible is God’s message to the people He created. It reveals Himself, His plans, and His amazing love for the world, which is the greatest reason of all to justify the importance of the Bible. All learning is related to Scripture with the purpose of showing the broad themes and principles of human experience. Because "All things are ours, we are Christ's and Christ is God's" (I Corinthians 3:22-23), and because "Whatever was said aright, by any man, at any time, belongs to us Christians" (Justin Martyr), we are able to study and enjoy the very best of human endeavor in art, literature, and music. The Bible serves as a fundamental tool for understanding many literary works, historical studies, and current events. No other book is quoted or alluded to in literature or in world history more than the Bible. God’s Word is authoritative (John 1:1, 14, 14:6) a.) It is above traditions (Mathew 15:1-3) b.) It is above human experience (II Peter 1:16-19) c.) It is above human knowledge and wisdom (1 Cor. 1: 18-23)
The Bible is the only Book in the world that logically can be considered inerrant in the autographs and documented scientific and medical prevision. Bible is important because it is infallible. (It means Incapable of failure or error (Psalm 19:7)  No Other ancient book is ever carefully analyzed along scientific lines, but many books have been written on the theme of the Bible and modern science and it is the only major ancient religious Scripture whose complete textual preservation is established as virtually autographic. It is contemporary and essential for Christians - It is critical that children be given the tools of logical analysis. Christian youths need to see that Christianity is not mere subjective feeling; rather it is intellectually defensible and offers rational understanding where other systems fail.

The Bible is not just about a list of do’s and don’ts, but this book says “Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”  2 Peter 1:20-21.It shows us how we are to view God and each other, how we are to conduct ourselves, and how we are to measure our ideas and activities. Bible is not a book of restrictions. Instead it is God's wisdom to transform our life to be conformed to the image of Lord Jesus Christ. Christ is the wisdom of God. Wisdom is the capacity to see things from the Lord’s viewpoint and respond according to His principles. You can’t instantly download that ability, but you can acquire it gradually over time. Knowledge comes from learning Bible; understanding is to comprehend and wisdom has to do with applying them. The Lord cautions us to keep His Word in our heart and in our mind so that we will heed His instructions (Ps. 119:11; Prov. 8:33).

Bible contains all wisdom we need to know for our salvation and godly living

Bible declares that “Christ is the wisdom of God” "In him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." Hence it is that the knowledge of Christ not only transcends all other knowledge– but includes them all; the study of this wondrous embodiment of all that is in God is not only superior to– but actually embraces, all other studies. Here we cannot fathom this; hereafter we may. Here we cannot see how a discovered Christ should be the discovery of all other things, all science, all nature, all things in heaven and earth; hereafter we shall find it so. Wisdom is one of the last things which we are in the habit of connecting with the name of Christ. We connect with it salvation, pardon, life, righteousness, love– but not wisdom. Yet it is wisdom that God so especially associates with Christ. "He, of God, is made unto us wisdom."
Have you ever wondered why we should study the Bible?  What does the Bible itself say regarding the importance of Bible study? We Must Study the Bible because it is the Foundation for Life. Without God's Word we will be purposeless and disrupted from our call and the purpose for our salvation. When we base our lives on the Word of God, then Christ can create His work in us by the power of the Spirit!
You’ll be amazed at what daily Bible reading can do in your personal life. Be a life-student of God’s Word, studying it regularly and systematically.  God’s Word is full of rich life application written to produce God’s best in our life.  It is meant to be read and digested on a daily basis. Daily practice of mediation of God’s word with prayer will change your life because IT CONNECTS YOU TO THE LIVING GOD. You may even think you know God. But if you have not read the account offered firsthand throughout this book, you will, in effect, know nothing definite about Him. The entire Old Testament points to Christ and His coming, and the entire New Testament testifies to his life, death, resurrection, ascension, teachings and second coming . It describes Jesus as exactly who he claims to be: the Supreme Lord and Ruler over all of mankind and the very creator God of the Universe.

 If you think you know about God already, consider the source of that "knowledge" and examine if this book may, in fact, be a better source for true knowledge about the one true Creator God that made you and everything else, both known an unknown in this Universe. When it comes to the big picture of the Bible, the following anonymous quotation sums up what the Bible is all about: “In the Old Testament we have Jesus predicted. In the Gospels we have Jesus revealed. In Acts we have Jesus preached. In the Epistles we have Jesus explained. In the Revelation we have Jesus expected.” I spent last 26 years walking with him. It was a tremendously exciting and glorious time and also a great learning and refining processes. Walking with him showed me that we can influence and change our generation, change our thinking, our words, our attitude, our behavior, our character and change our heart and life. 

There is no end to the gaining of knowledge; it is only the foolish man who thinks he knows everything. Modern knowledge is very complex and infinite in scope. Thousands of researchers, all over the world are constantly at work to acquire more knowledge for us. But the massive increase in Natural knowledge of the world sometimes doesn't make us better human beings. Sadly, with the passage of time, man started misusing knowledge. He started using knowledge to destroy the very forces that provided him sustenance. He interfered with nature and disturbed the ecological balance. He has polluted air, land and water. He has, thus created unfavorable conditions for himself and others. Man has developed destructive weapons that can destroy completely the whole of mankind. The bombing of Nagasaki and Hiroshima proves the fact. Man is posing a threat to the existence of flora and fauna. Knowledge shouldn't be misused. Nuclear power must be used for useful purpose. Man should find solutions to control and check pollution. Knowledge must be acquired and shared as a collective effort .Lack of knowledge leads to poverty and absence of economic prosperity. Knowledge should be utilized for the improvement of the underprivileged, eradication of poverty and education of deprived. It should be used for peace, prosperity and growth.

 For a learner, everyone is a teacher. We learn from nature, we learn from people, we learn from difficult experiences and above all, we learn from our mistakes and failures. A community that values success and despises failures is not a learning community. An organization where people are afraid to make mistakes and are afraid to fail creates timidity and cowardice. In such a culture, it is difficult to take risks and go on a journey of adventure. Such an institution encourages people to take a well-trodden path of security and predictability.
Christianity is a religion of knowledge, understanding and wisdom. Christians are the royal priesthood- Kings and priests – To offer up spiritual sacrifices - Not bloody offerings, the blood of lambs and bullocks, but those which are the offerings of the heart - the sacrifices of prayer and praise. Since there is a priest, there is also involved the notion of a sacrifice; but that which is offered is such as all Christians offer to God, proceeding from the heart, and breathed forth from the lips, and in a holy life.( I Peter 2:5; 2:9, and Revelation 1:5-6.) The priesthood of believers grows out of the priesthood of Christ. Kingdom describes the body of the redeemed collectively. Priests indicate their individual position. The saints are made "kings" by Christ; they are so now; they have received a kingdom of grace, which cannot be taken away; and they have the power of kings over sin, Satan, and the world, and all their enemies; and they live and fare like kings, and are clothed like them, in rich apparel, the righteousness of Christ; and are attended as kings, angels being their lifeguards; and they will appear much more so hereafter, when they shall reign on earth with Christ a thousand years, shall sit upon the same throne, and have a crown of life and righteousness given them, and at last be introduced into the kingdom of glory.

Where there is no solid biblical teaching, the Christian life can neither commence nor continue. One of the basic differences between the Mosaic regime (into which one was born physically) and the church of Jesus Christ, is the fact that knowledge is prerequisite to identifying with the faith of the gospel (Jer. 31:31-34). Jesus declared that favor with God must involve instruction, reception, comprehension, and commitment (Jn. 6:45).Anyone with a smattering of Bible knowledge, and any experience at all within our brotherhood, is aware of the fact that the church of today is facing a time of great crisis. Why are things in such a state of chaos? One of the reasons is ignorance. There probably has not been a time in this century when Bible knowledge among the people has sunk to such a base level. The knowledge which the nation of Israel so desperately lacked was the KNOWLEDGE OF GOD. To no surprise, this is exactly the same knowledge which is woefully lacking in modern world today.  God has clearly stated in the Bible that He is NO respecter of persons. God always honors repentance, whether it be an individual or a nation. If any nation is to be saved, then she must once again regain the knowledge of God.  People are free to reject this book and what it says. God made us "free moral agents" to choose as we desire. Yet, people violate the teachings and wisdom of this book at their own peril.

The Apostle Paul said Christ gave to the Church some gifts, some functions. They are apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers to train the saints for the work of their ministry. That word “ministry” means to exercise their gifts according to the perfect will of God. So the goal of all leadership is to serve people to discover their purpose and then help them to refine and develop the character and skill in agreement with God’s word. Then the Body will never suffer weakness because each one will bring to the table their gift, their strength. We can teach ourselves and each other to bring the Word of life in to all that we do. And, we can rest in the assurance that the Word is directly inspired; it is His words to be put into our actions, by His guidance and support. Thus, the opportunity is given to us to seize His Word so we can be wise and live our lives with purpose, direction, and meaning. In this way, we can impact our society with divine knowledge, dignity and liberty, giving hope and showing the Way. Or, we can ignore Him, as most people do, and live in a meaningless rut or, as the Bible say, to be foolish. Or worse, we can be teachers of the Word yet refuse to be disciplined ourselves, exchanging the truth of the Word for our arrogance and wanderlust!

Paul writes that “in the last days” men and women would be “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth“ – 2 Timothy 3:7. And the next verse tells why. It is because they “oppose the truth” (v. 8). A chapter later we read in 4:4, that people “will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.” Today’s society is becoming impressed with self gratification. Bible says “But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,”(2 Timothy 2:1-4) We seem to be preoccupied with promoting ourselves to ourselves. There seems to be such a grab for self-promotion, self-labeling, self-advertisement, and self-possession. Bible is full of specific instruction on how we should treat each other. If we are serious about following Christ, we will heed his admonition that "Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me" (Mathew 25:40). Jesus Christ gave the command to his disciples to “Love one another.” We are called to love one another.

Therefore Paul said “Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.”(2 Timothy 2:15NLT) When people die without being saved, it is not that God did not want them to be saved, for He would “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” – 1 Timothy 2:4. “The Lord is . . . not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.“ – 2 Peter 3:9. God has given obtainable knowledge, and He has also given us free will, so that whatever choice we make, that is the one that we will have to live with for eternity.

Paul instructed Timothy to study in order to correctly divide the word of truth. The words correctly or rightly dividing translates a word which literally means to cut a straight furrow across a field. As it is used here, it simply means to teach the truth correctly and directly, or to handle it aright. “A good Bible teacher can inspire hope, ignite the thoughts, and instill a love of learning scripture.” 2 Timothy 3 says that the Bible is profitable for teaching. The words useful (NIV), and profitable (NKJV), imply that we actually profit from God’s Word.
The knowledge of Christ produces obedience, and love to the brethren. “People can be made free from the evil in the world. They can be made free by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But if they go back into those evil things and are controlled by them, then it is worse for them than it was before.  Yes, it would be better for them to have never known the right way. That would be better than to know the right way and then to turn away from the holy teaching that was given to them.” (2Pet 2:20-21-ERV)

Saving knowledge of Christ is a personal knowledge. I cannot know Jesus through another person’s acquaintance with Him. No, I must know Him for myself. Saving knowledge of Christ will be an intelligent knowledge. I must know Him, not as the visionary dreams of Him—but as the Word reveals Him. I must know His natures, divine and human. I must know His offices—His attributes—His works—His death—His resurrection and His glory. I must meditate upon Him until I am “able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love; and know the love of Christ, which passes knowledge!”Saving knowledge of Christ will be an affectionate knowledge of Him. Indeed, if I know Him at all, I must love Him. An ounce of heart knowledge—is worth a ton of head learning!

Saving knowledge of Christ will be a satisfying knowledge. When you know Christ, your mind will be full to the edge— David said, "As the deer pants for the water brooks, so pants my soul for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?" (Psalm 42:1, 2) David was following God all the time. He had such a hunger and thirst for God. We live in a world that is hungry for so many things. We see people that are hungry for fame, position, power and riches. But God is always looking for people who are hungry for God. 

The more we know of Jesus, the more we will want to be like Him and to be with Him by becoming the manner of men and women that He wishes us to be. it is the determinate will of God to bring them to the knowledge of the truth, in order to salvation; and that same decree which fixes salvation as the end, secures the belief of the truth as the means; and the covenant of grace provides for their knowledge of spiritual things, as well as other spiritual blessings; in consequence of which their minds are enlightened by the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, and they have the knowledge of God and Christ given them, which is life eternal. My deepest passion is that we may all know the Savior and be known of Him; that we might engage in the powerful process of hearing the Shepherd's voice and following Him and in the process become like Him; that we might be counted among His friends and enjoy a life like His—eternal life, the greatest of all the gifts of God.

 “Jesus said “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.”(John 6:35) Jesus always gives an invitation for us to come to him. Jesus said that the one who comes to Him would He by no means cast away. Jesus said in Matthew 11:28, "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”. Knowledge of Christ will be an exciting knowledge. The more we know Christ—the more we become like Him. More you hunger and thirst for Him, the more will He reveal Himself to you and the more you will yearn for Him. When you have a longing for Jesus, no one needs to tell you to do the things of God. You cannot but be in the things of God. When you hunger and thirst for God, all you will want to be is in His presence all the time. You will be in prayer and fellowship with Him. When you have a relationship with God, your heart's deepest craving and your soul's greatest longing will be to know more about Jesus and His word. You will want to fellowship with Jesus more and more and spend time with His word. There is simply nothing more satisfying as the knowledge of who God is.  Saving knowledge of Christ Jesus will be a most blissful. In fact, it will be so elevating, that sometimes it will completely bear us up above all trials, and doubts, and sorrows! Jesus said, "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled" (Matthew 5:6).May the Good Lord give us a greater desire and longing heart for acquiring the knowledge of the sovereign God. Amen.

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