“That’s cool. How’s it work?” “I don’t know. It just does.”
I’m not real fond of that kind of conversation. I like to comprehend. When my questions are unanswered, I dig deeper. I’ve got to know.
On the other hand, I’m no fool. I know enough to know that I cannot know everything, not even everything there is to know—not to mention all there is that I cannot know. You know?
God has His prerogative. There are things He simply does not tell us for whatever reason—maybe we do better not knowing, maybe we simply cannot put it all together, maybe there are not enough brain cells in our skulls to hold it all. It could be a myriad of reasons.
God hasn’t told us why He doesn’t tell us the things He doesn’t tell us.
No one blames Him—at least no one with good sense. He is God and that is His divine privilege. And, it is our great privilege to know anything He desires to share with us. And that which He shares is only so deep—it has to be. We are finite people relying on an infinite God to supply our RSS feed. And when we reach that point when the feed stops, we can only wonder at His infinite wisdom.
Take the power of God’s Word, for example. We know that God’s Word:
- is powerful (Heb. 4:12),
- saves souls (James 1:21),
- brings life from death (2 Pet. 1:4),
- works godliness (1 Thess. 2:13),
- and more.
This part we get, really. It is the next part that boggles us. No, not the part that by hearing it, our minds are transformed and our hearts are shaped by new ways of thinking, new ways of believing, and new ways of behaving (Rom. 10:17). But the part where life comes from death, light from dark, good from bad, righteous from wickedness—that part mystifies us.
Why? Because it is a mystery. Duh.
Mysteries arise when some of the pertinent information is not available. “We know in part,” as Paul says (1 Cor. 13:9). The other part we don’t know. In the Old Testament, for example, the gospel was taught in small bits and pieces and remained a mystery to those who understood in part. But in the New Testament—particularly in Christ—the mystery was made known in full (Eph. 3:1-13).
The power of God’s Word, however, remains mysterious. What we observe is that the closer we come to the Word of God, the closer we get to the power.
Here is an illustration—and simultaneously, instruction on how to find your missing cell phone. When you know it is somewhere in the house, simply call it with another phone and listen for the ring. When you hear it, walk to it. The louder the ringtone, the closer you are. It’s not rocket science. You’ll know when you find it—the ring will be at its most powerful volume. Grab it and keep it.
The closer we are to Scripture, the closer we get to the power.
As a disclaimer, I’m using relative distance to make a point. Standing next to your Bible doesn’t help you any. By “getting closer” I mean getting to the meaning of Scripture without getting second-hand, CliffsNotes of what someone concluded based on the meaning.
Transformation power is found in the study of God’s Word, which God provided for us.
Why does this matter? Because we settle for second-rate power when we hear our phone ringing in the other room and never get close enough to get it.
Do you find yourself running to God’s Word for His life-changing power?