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How to Know God Through the Bible | Part 2

Love Worth Finding / Adrian Rogers
The Truth Network Radio
August 31, 2021 8:00 am

How to Know God Through the Bible | Part 2

Love Worth Finding / Adrian Rogers

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August 31, 2021 8:00 am

Adrian Rogers reveals how to know God through the Bible so you can love, trust, and obey God.

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How can we truly know God?

Listen closely to Adrian Rogers. The way to be blessed is to obey God, which requires us to learn how to know God through the Bible. Jesus Christ and Him crucified, and I was with you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. Now, when I think first of all about the deficiency of human wisdom, the first thing that comes to me is that this human wisdom, in the end, is so superficial. You see, if you knew God just simply by human wisdom, if I could just begin to teach a course in systematic theology, I could tell you all of the facts about God, and you could get out your notebook and you could write them down, and you could say, God is omnipotent, God is omniscient, and God is this and God is that. And you could learn all of the facts about God. You wouldn't know God.

You wouldn't know about God, and yet not know God. But secondly, not only is human wisdom so superficial, it is so transitory. Look again in verse 6, howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect, yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world. Now, the word princes, it stands for the intellectuals, those intellectual topwaters of this world, these people who have attained in their learning. He said we speak wisdom, but not the wisdom of this world, not what the princes of this world know that will come to naught. Now, when he says the princes of this world, he literally says the princes of this age, that is for this time. There are certain people in this day and this age, and they're supposed to be the great vaunted intellectual leaders. And Paul says, hey, all of that is just going up in smoke.

It's going to come to naught. I remember hearing Dr. R.G. Lee, who had the ability to express himself so eloquently, talk about philosophy. And he said that philosophy was a chunk of cloud bank buttered with the night wind. Now, that's what the apostle Paul is talking about here. It's the wisdom of the princes of this world.

Folks, it's just going to come to nothing. It is so superficial. It is so transitory.

And it is so limited. Look again, if you will, in verse 7. But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory. Now, human wisdom is totally incapable of understanding or probing into what Paul calls here the divine mystery. We speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom.

What does he mean here by mystery? He's talking here about a sacred secret that you can only know as God reveals Himself to you. You see, human wisdom can never, never fathom God.

I don't care how smart you are. You don't have a head start toward God. You see, the finite can never probe the infinite. You can never fathom God.

The natural man can never know the supernatural God. Wisdom is so superficial, the wisdom of this world. The wisdom of this world is so transitory.

It is so passing away. The wisdom of this world is so limited. And then he goes on to speak of the wisdom of this world that is actually so dangerous and ungodly.

Go on in verse 8 and look. He speaks of the wisdom of this world, which as compared to the wisdom of God, and then he speaks, he says, which none of the princes of this world knew, for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. If these smart alecks in this world had known real wisdom, they never would have nailed Jesus Christ to the cross. Here the classic proof of the bankruptcy of human wisdom is the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. And who crucified Jesus Christ? I want to remind you that Jesus Christ was crucified by the best minds of his day. It was not the rabble. It was the Jewish and Roman intelligentsia that nailed Jesus Christ up to the cross.

And I want to tell you something else. They did not do it casually. They did it carefully after they applied their minds to it.

Not a few of them, but many of them. And the Bible says they took counsel together. That is, they pooled their so-called wisdom and they crucified the Lord of glory. Well, why is all of this? Why is human wisdom so superficial? Why is human wisdom so transitory? Why is human wisdom so limited? Why is human wisdom so dangerous? And why does a natural man, a man without Christ, why does he have such a difficulty understanding the things of God?

Well, look in verse 9. But as it is written, eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. And so we see the deficiency of human wisdom. Human wisdom is so superficial. Human wisdom is so transitory. Human wisdom is so limited.

Human wisdom is so dangerous. You cannot know God through human wisdom. Now, God has done three mighty acts that you might know him. There are three things that God has done. And because God has done these things, you can know God. The first of these mighty acts is what we call revelation. God simply reveals himself. Now, we left off in verses 9, and let's pick up verse 9 and 10.

Let's go back and read it again. Verse 9. But as it is written, eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

The only way that you can know God is for God to disclose himself to you. 1 Corinthians chapter 12, verse 3. Paul said, Wherefore I give you to understand that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed. Well, I think we would all agree to that.

But most of us perhaps would not realize the rest of that statement. And no man can say that Jesus is Lord but by the Holy Ghost. What he means is this, that no man can have Christ as Lord in his life, can know Jesus Christ as Lord so as to make a proper confession of faith that Christ is Lord until the Spirit of God gives him that. God supernaturally reveals himself to us. Revelation is the communication of God's truth to man by God himself. Now the second thing, the second thing that God has done, not only has God given us supernatural revelation, but God has also given us supernatural inspiration. Continue to read now in verses 12 and following. Now we have received not the Spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God, that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. Now when Paul uses the word we, he's talking here about the apostles, and he's saying that we have received this message.

And now he says we give you this message. Now what is the difference between revelation and inspiration? Revelation is God disclosing himself. Inspiration is those taking what God has given and recording it in such a way that it is absolutely without error, it is the very Word of God.

Notice in verse 13, which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth. That is the Holy Ghost gave the words. We believe in verbal inspiration. The word verbal means word by word inspiration. God did not just inspire the thoughts of the Bible. God inspired the words of the Bible, because you cannot have thoughts without words any more than you could have mathematics without numbers. Now there's some people who laugh at the idea of verbal inspiration.

Now if you laugh at the idea of verbal inspiration, I want to tell you that you're laughing at Jesus Christ, for Jesus said in Matthew chapter 4, verse 4, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every what? Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. Now, dear friend, God disclosed himself. That is what we call supernatural revelation.

No man can receive anything except to be given him from above from heaven. But not only is there that revelation, there is that inspiration as these words inspired are written down and we have them in what we call the word of God, the Bible. And I want to remind you that God gave the very words of the Bible.

Now, the third mighty act, and here's where it comes to you now. First of all, there is that revelation. Then there's that supernatural inspiration.

And finally, there must be a supernatural illumination. Now continue to read now in verse 14. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for their foolishness unto him, neither can he know them, for they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judges, discerns all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him? But we have, hallelujah, the mind of Christ.

Now, that is illumination. Now listen, the same Holy Spirit of revelation and the same Holy Spirit of inspiration is now the spirit of illumination. He is the one who illuminates the Christian.

He is the one who turns the spiritual light on so that you can understand the things of God. We have a divinely inspired Bible in our hands, but we cannot understand it apart from spiritual supernatural illumination. I can never know the Bible, as I ought to know the Bible, until I have the mind of Christ. Do you know a prayer that would be a good prayer for you to pray when you begin to study the Word of God?

It is Psalm 119, verse 18. Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things in thy law. O God, illumine me.

Open my eyes, that I might understand. When you pray that prayer and when you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then a part of you will know that never knew before and a part of you will see that never saw before. And a man who is living by divine illumination is going to be a mystery to those around him.

Look in verses 15 and 16. The Bible says, but he that is spiritual judges all things. That is, he has a penetrating insight into the way things work. He has a supernatural wisdom about him, yet he himself is judged of no man. That literally means he's not understood by any man. The word discern is a better word here.

He himself is discerned of no man. The world is not going to understand us. I'll tell you, we're going to know some things that they won't know, and they're really going to think we're the crazy ones. They're going to think we're a few bricks short of a full load. And they're going to say there's something wrong with that fellow, but there's not something wrong with us.

There's something wrong with him. You see, we're tuned in where he's not tuned in. We are marching to the beat of a different drummer. Now, they cannot understand us, but we understand them.

The reason they can't understand us is that we have the mind of Christ, and they can't understand Christ. Now, this is what we call illumination. Now, I want to give you some lessons about illumination very quickly, and I'll be finished.

I want to give you some warnings here as we talk about illumination. And illumination is really right now where the rubber meets the road in knowing God. Now, remember we said to know God is to love God, to love God is to trust God, to trust God is to obey God, and to obey God is to be blessed. And we said that you cannot know God with a natural mind.

You must know God in the Spirit supernaturally, and the way you can know God is because God has divinely revealed Himself, and God has divinely inspired that revelation. We have a Bible, and now we have the Bible in our hand. But in order to understand the Bible, there must be that divine illumination, that supernatural illumination.

Now, folks, it's all headed down right to this. This is the important thing, so I want you to understand this. What does illumination mean? Number one, it does not mean that you can know everything about God. No one knows everything about God, and we're not supposed to know everything about God. Deuteronomy chapter 29, verse 29 says, the secret things belong unto the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children forever. That is, a person who has illumination doesn't know everything.

You can go down to the ocean and dip out a bucket of ocean water, and everything in that bucket will be ocean, but all the ocean won't be in that bucket. And, dear friend, when you come to God's Word and you dip into God's Word, you can come up with a bucket full of truth, but there's so much that you still will not know and the things perhaps you will never know, and still you can have illumination. I want to say that illumination does not extend to areas beyond the Word of God. Now, for example, when you go to a math test, it's not going to do you any good to bow your head and say, Spirit of God, illumine me.

If you haven't studied for it, you're going to flunk. Listen, folks, you can pray for wisdom, but you study for knowledge. You study for knowledge. Now, illumination does not mean that you won't study the Word of God either. Listen, 2 Timothy chapter 2, verse 15 says, we're to study to show ourselves approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth. If I want God to illumine me, I will study. And I study the Bible, I pore over the Bible, but when I study it and pore over it, I say, oh, God, illumine me. Time and time again when I'm studying, I'll stop, I'll put it aside, I'll lift my hands to heaven and say, God, teach me.

Oh, God, I want to know. And then I will go back and I will study and exegete and try to find out what it is saying, but I know now that the Holy Spirit of God is helping me because the Bible says I'm to study to show myself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed. And the word here literally means, rightly dividing, means to cut it straight.

Now, I want to say something else. Illumination does not mean that there are no spiritual requirements. You cannot just come to God and say, God, illumine me if you are not walking a clean and a pure life. Listen to what Peter says in 1 Peter chapter 2, verses 1 and 2. He says, Wherefore, laying aside all malice and all guile and hypocrisies and envies and evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that you may grow thereby. You want God's word to be real to you?

Get the trash out of your life. Lay it aside and hunger after the word of God and He will illumine you. I'll tell you what it does mean, however. It does mean that the average man, the average woman, the average boy, the average girl in the pew who is obedient and diligent can understand the word of God. Go back to chapter 1, verse 26. For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called, but God hath chosen the foolish things of the world that confound the wise, and God hath chosen the weak things of the world that confound the things which are mighty, and base things of the world, and things which are despised hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to naught things that are.

What does that mean? It means, dear friend, that God takes ordinary people and God does extraordinary things through those people. It means that you, John Doe Lehman, can get your Bible and you can pray over it and you can get your heart right with God and you can say, Spirit of God, illumine me and then you can study to show yourself approved unto God and God will reveal Himself to you supernaturally out of the Bible. Now, it does mean something else too, dear friend, that you can have a personal communion with God. I think of those two disciples as they were walking there on the road to Emmaus after the resurrection of Jesus Christ and Jesus came and walked along beside them and here are some precious verses. Luke 24, verse 45, Then opened He their understanding that they might understand the Scriptures.

Isn't that wonderful? I mean, here's the Son of God. He is walking along. He is talking with them.

You couldn't have a better teacher than that. About seven miles they walked together and the Bible says He showed them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. How would you like to have a tape recording of that? Well, evidently God didn't want us to have it but He just took the Bible and He showed them all those Old Testament prophecies concerning Himself. But the point of the matter is even with that kind of a teacher, the very Son of God, they didn't understand until He opened their understanding. Now, you think about it. Then opened He their understanding. You see, this is the illumination, friend.

It is so supernatural. You will never know until God gives you knowledge of Himself. That's the reason we must come so reverently, so prayerfully to the Word of God. In Luke 24, verse 32, they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us while He talked to us by the way and while He opened to us the Scriptures? Oh, would to God that He would open to you the Scriptures.

Now, folks, I'm finished, but you listen to me. Everybody wants to be blessed, don't they? There's no blessing without obedience. There is no obedience without trust.

There is no trust without love. There is no love without knowledge. There is no knowledge of God without revelation, inspiration, illumination. And the illumination is your part where you come to God and surrender so to God and say, Oh, Spirit of God, open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things in thy law. And when you come to God's Word that way, the Bible will burst a flame in your heart and in your mind, and God will teach you things out of His Word. The reason that many of us don't know God is, folks, we're just playing around at Bible study, and you can't do it that way. May God help us to get into His Word.

Now let's bow together in prayer. Father, I pray now that you'll speak to our hearts about this wonderful truth and help us, Lord, to begin to search out in the Scriptures those things concerning our lovely Lord Jesus and to apply them to our hearts. And if you have questions regarding your faith in Jesus Christ, we'd love to offer an insightful free resource on our website. It's our Discover Jesus page. There you'll find answers you may need about your faith.

We have a response section as well. Share how this message or others have made a difference in your life. Go to lwf.org slash radio and click the tab that says Discover Jesus.

Let us hear from you today. Now, if you'd like to order a copy of today's message in its entirety, you can call us at 1-877-LOVEGOD. Mention the title How to Know God Through the Bible.

You can also order online at lwf.org slash radio. Or write us at Love Worth Finding, Box 38600, Memphis, Tennessee 38183. As you continue with your day, remember these words from Pastor Rogers. When you come to God's word in surrender, the Bible will burst a flame in your heart and in your mind, and God will teach you the things out of His word. We hope you'll join us next time for more timeless truth right here on Love Worth Finding. A listener in North Carolina reached out to us recently with this note of encouragement.

I really do enjoy the messages I receive from the emails you send me. Pastor Rogers' sermons have blessed my walk with the Lord. The sermons, the outlines have helped me to understand the word of God. Well, at Love Worth Finding, it's our mission to help listeners grow in their faith through these timeless messages and the practical resources we offer. When you donate to the ministry right now, we want to send you our God's word booklet collection. This bundle contains profound and practical booklets from Adrian Rogers teaching that will help you find meaning in your quiet time, put power in your prayer, and more. Request this God's word booklet collection when you call with a gift at 1-877-LOVEGOD, 1-877-568-3463 or give online at lwf.org slash radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-12 04:58:47 / 2023-09-12 05:08:09 / 9

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