Let us pursue the knowledge of God

“Let us know, let us pursue the knowledge of the LORD” (Hosea 6:3).

To pursue is to resolutely strive for something even if it is difficult to obtain.

God placed people on earth “so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us” (Acts 17:27).

What does it mean to know God?

Knowing a person is different from knowing a fact. You know someone only if you are familiar with his characteristics, if you know what he is like. Effort is required to get to know anyone, so it is not strange that effort is required to know God. God’s nature is revealed in the Scriptures.

To know someone well, one must have a personal relationship with that person. Likewise, one must have a personal relationship with God to know Him well. And by sending His Son, God has made this possible!

One cannot know God through human wisdom.

“For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe” (1 Corinthians 1:21).

We must seek knowledge in general to find the knowledge of God.

“Yes, if you cry out for discernment,
And lift up your voice for understanding,
If you seek her as silver,
And search for her as for hidden treasures;
Then you will understand the fear of the LORD,
And find the knowledge of God.
For the LORD gives wisdom;
From His mouth come knowledge and understanding”
(Proverbs 2:3-6).

Knowledge in general is a gift of God and only those who seek knowledge will find the knowledge of God.

Paul speaks of certain people who are “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Timothy 3:7). This is because they have insufficient respect for God: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge” (Proverbs 1:7). “For God gives wisdom and knowledge and joy to a man who is good in His sight” (Ecclesiastes 2:26).

Someone who hates knowledge cannot know God.

“How long, you simple ones, will you love simplicity? For scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge” (Proverbs 1:22).

Deceitful people refuse to know God: “‘Your dwelling place is in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know Me,’ says the LORD” (Jeremiah 9:6).

God does not listen to the prayers of people who reject His knowledge: “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently, but they will not find me. Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the LORD, they would have none of my counsel and despised my every rebuke. Therefore they shall eat the fruit of their own way, and be filled to the full with their own fancies” (Proverbs 1:28-31).

God said about Israel: “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6).

Much evil emanates from a rejection of the knowledge of God: “because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man - and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen” (Romans 1:21-25).

Just claiming to know God is not enough. Of certain people Paul wrote: “They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work” (Titus 1:16).

They who do not know God will be punished when Jesus is “revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thessalonians 1:7, 8).

To be God’s people we must know God.

Under the new covenant one cannot be a part of God’s people unless one knows God: “No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more” (Jeremiah 31:34).

Under the Old Covenant, God’s people were a regular nation that included people who knew God and people who did not know God. The faithful encouraged the others to know God.

Under the New Covenant, God’s people are a spiritual nation consisting only of those who know God. “Then I will give them a heart to know Me, that I am the LORD; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God, for they shall return to Me with their whole heart” (Jeremiah 24:7).

In Christ we know God.

We know God through Christ: “No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him” (John 1:18).

In the Son we can have a personal relationship with the Father: “We know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life” (1 John 5:20).

Being “in Christ” means to be in His body, the church (Ephesians 1:22, 23). We are “baptized into Christ” (Romans 6:3; Galatians 3:27). “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body” (1 Corinthians 12:13).

“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3).

Paul explains that Christians have a personal relationship with the Father because the Spirit of His Son is in their hearts: “And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, ‘Abba, Father!’ Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ” (Galatians 4:6, 7).

Our knowledge of God must increase.

Paul prayed that the Colossians might “walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:10).

Peter admonishes us to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18).

Knowledge of God must be put into practice.

We can know God only if we love one another and keep His commandments: “Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him” (1 John 2:3, 4). “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4:7, 8).

Pursue the knowledge of God.

From the Scriptures we can become familiar with God’s characteristics. One cannot know God through human wisdom. To know God we must seek knowledge in general. Someone who hates knowledge cannot know God. We may not reject the knowledge of God. They who do not know God will be punished. We must know God to be His people. Through Christ we can have a personal relationship with Him. Our knowledge of God must increase and must be put into practice.

“Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord” (2 Peter 1:2). Amen.

Roy Davison

The Scripture quotations in this article are from
The New King James Version. ©1979,1980,1982, Thomas Nelson Inc.,
Publishers unless indicated otherwise.
Permission for reference use has been granted.

Published in The Old Paths Archive