Romans 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!
The knowledge of God surpasses our ability to understand. When we start to see God’s attributes collectively being utilized within the scope of this temporary world, we can start to get a better grip on the reality that God operates far beyond and above the scope of our reason. There comes a point in life where we have to learn to trust God’s knowledge over our own logic. What sense to us might not fit into the scheme of God’s plan. There comes a point in the Christian life where we have to accept and then believe this principle at face value in order to keep from losing all sanity.
Life can throw some challenging blows. The difficulty of life’s circumstances can make us question whether God has a clue as to whether or not He knows what He is doing. Trust me, there have been plenty of times in my life that I have questioned God’s methodology. There have been times where I have told God I disagreed with His plan. I can also see this happening throughout scripture. Jesus himself looked at God the Father and said “if there be any other way.” Please remember that Jesus replied, “not my will but thine will be done.” We know that Jesus experienced the most excruciating of pains while dying on the cross. However, we also know that God’s plan was one that gave the world a path to salvation.
The thing we have to embrace is that God is just smarter than us. The intelligence of God surpasses our logic, and even the greatest of minds. Once we are able to operate with this kind of trust then it makes life’s circumstances so much more bearable. Once we come to this point of relying on this attribute then it increases our hope. Honestly, would you not want God in the driver’s seat of your life?
Malachi 3:6 For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.
Everything around us changes. Change is difficult and adjustments to life are hard. For the most part people struggle with change. One of the great comforts of the Christian life is the fact that God does not change. Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” Why would such an attribute give us comfort? It is because in a world that is forever changing we have something that is both constant and consistent in our lives.
The immutability of the Lord gives Christians a reference point during difficult times. It allows us to focus in on something that will continue to guide us home. Like a sailor uses stars as a directional guide so must Christians use the Lord as a reference point to guide them to where they need to be. Life can send us in many different directions. Sometimes we get knocked off course. We can always look toward the Lord because He is not changing.
What if this attribute did not exist? Think for a moment about the position He holds, the power He possesses, and the plan He maintains. If He changed with the seasons then these things would change as well. His immutability gives Him a fixed position that is unmovable. His unlimited power gives him the ability to operate outside the realm of a person’s wildest imaginations. His unchanging plan keeps a consistent teaching throughout time that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.
God is not moving, and God is not changing. Look and lean on that principle today.
Colossians 1:17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
Does this verse bring you comfort or anger? When you look at this verse you see everything that is good with everything that is bad in this world and think that all this consists by God. Please understand that when the verse says all things consist by Him it means all things are approved by Him. I recently heard a message where the speaker stated “everything is either authored by God or allowed by God.” From one perspective it comforts me to know that God has this level of control, but on the other hand it still makes me wonder why God would even allow things to happen in the way that they happen.
I think one often overlooked concept about the nature, character, and attributes of God is that we tend to look at the attributes as isolated attributes. If we look at this one attribute by itself then we see a God that is perceived to be harsh and mean. On the other hand, when we look at this attribute grouped with His other attributes we see a God that wants complete and total trust in a plan that has the ability to work everything to His good and glory.
It is equally important that we do not isolate circumstances or events. The Lord was before all things which speaks of eternality. If we look at what God is doing right now as an isolated event then it could cause us to view Him as unloving and uncaring. We have to trust his eternality. This means if we truly believe this attribute of God then we cannot look at our present situation without considering the full plan of God that has not been unfolded yet. When it says “by Him do all things consist,” we have to consider “all things.” This means we have to consider everything in light of His past and future plans. For example, right now we are wondering why God is allowing this to happen. However, our trust must revert toward the fact that He is not finished. “All things” will include what is to come as well as what we are experiencing right now.
Please let this passage encourage us to know that God is not being mean, hateful, or uncaring. We need to realize that He is in complete control. It is up to us to find joy in the Lord of the circumstance rather than the circumstance. God does love us. God does have a plan. God’s thoughts are of peace and not of harm. It may be tough, but HE AIN’T DONE!
Colossians 3:10-11 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: 11 Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.
This one phrase is very difficult to put into words. We have to ask ourselves what it actually means when we say that Christ is “all and in all”. We also have to ask ourselves how that one phrase can be applied to our lives on a daily basis. It has to be more than just a statement, but this characteristic of the Lord must be held in the backdrop of our lives. Many of us have heard the song with the following lyrics:
You are my strength when I am weak
You are the treasure that I seek
You are my all in all
Seeking You as a precious jewel
Lord, to give up I’d be a fool
You are my all in all
What does this mean? When you look up the phrase “all in all” it actually is used in the context of considering every aspect and taking everything into account. When talking about an event or situation we may use the phrase “all in all, everything went good.” Now we see that scripture mentions that as a description of the Lord. When we say the Lord is our “all in all” we are actually putting Him into the context of every aspect of our lives. In one regard, it is similar to the statement “I Am” in the Old Testament. When God says tell them “I Am” sent you then you need to consider that whatever you consider God to be or whatever you need God to be in that particular circumstance that is what He is.
When describing the Lord as our “all in all” we need to be clear on whether or not we are living it and not just saying it. We need to consider the situation that is our greatest struggle and then ask ourselves whether we have given Him that kind of control within our lives. Is He truly “all and in all” to us? When we consider every aspect of our lives is He all that matters? Is He involved in everything? Do we consider the Lord as a crutch or do we consider Him to be our entire life support system? It is not that the Lord is part of our lives He must be involved in every part of our lives. Now, is He our All in All?
Psalms 119:34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart.
The word observe means to keep, guard, or watch over. It has the idea of a soldier keeping watch over a post until otherwise relieved. The soldier must be aware and alert at all times. The soldier possesses a sense of duty that produces a desire to guard whatever he/she has been assigned to protect. This is the context of the way we should view God’s Word. When the psalmist says he will observe it with all his heart, he is saying he will keep watch over it with all his heart. Oh to have a heart like this toward the Word of God, to treat it as the most precious of treasures, to devote oneself to watching it, observing it, and keeping it with all that is within us, to desire to place such a value on the words of God that we operate like a watchman overlooking the most precious of jewels.
The question we must ask ourselves is whether or not we have a heart for God’s word. Is all our heart devoted to God’s Word. The desire to understand God’s mind and God’s will comes from a heart that values God’s Word. I am afraid God’s word is no longer being observed. The desire to keep God’s word is something that is no longer a priority. God’s people must learn to desire God’s word more than they desire the most valuable of treasures.
If you want to understand God’s word then observe it with all your heart.
Deuteronomy 6:5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
The statement, “I love the Lord”, is often made but I am afraid there is little to no evidence. Much of our love relationship with the Lord is lip service. I have often asked the question: “How do you know that you love the Lord?” If a person was on trial for having a relationship with Jesus Christ, would there be enough evidence to prove it. Loving the Lord is something that should be exemplified rather than expressed.
When we break this verse down it always starts from the inside and moves to the outside. Our love relationship with the Lord starts in the heart, consumes the soul, and becomes exposed by our actions. God never works from the outside-in, He always works from the inside-out. The reason our relationship with the Lord struggles is because of the condition of our heart. The battle for the heart is a constant struggle. There is always something or someone that desires the throne of our heart. The thing about the Lord is that He will not battle for the heart. Honestly, the Lord won the battle when He gave His life on the cross for us. However, it is completely up to us whether or not we relinquish the throne to him.
This is one of those verses that seems so simple, it is just difficult. The reason it is so difficult is because it requires God to have our undivided attention. With the desires of the heart being so divided the instability of life becomes more evident. If we want stability then we need to allow God to have our undivided attention.
Jeremiah 29:13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.
There are many people that have a hard time finding God. They have a hard time knowing what He is saying to them. They use statements like, “God is not speaking to me” or “I can’t seem to hear what He is saying.” One of two things is possible in this scenario: the person is either not a child of God because only saved can truly hear God speak to them or the person is not searching for God with all their heart. To the believer that is struggling to hear from the Lord it is necessary that we evaluate the pursuits of our heart.
Just what has our heart’s attention? What are the desires of our heart? When have we ever went after God with all our heart? Do we operate with the mentality that we will find him later if we happen to see him? You see we must come to a place where we evaluate what we are truly seeking. The very reason we are not finding what we are looking for in life is because we are putting our heart into seeking the wrong things. We are pouring our hearts into careers, achievements, and approval of others. How many times have we poured all our heart into searching for the Lord? If we want to come to a place of hearing from the Lord and finding the Lord in our lives then it is going to take an all heart search.
When it comes to spiritual matters the Lord seems to get the leftovers of the heart. He very rarely finds someone that totally abandons self and desires nothing but His presence. May God help us to take our search for the Lord to a higher level. He promises the treasure of His presence at the end of the search. He promises us that He will be found if we seek him with all our hearts.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.
This verse has always been strange to me. I completely understand the concept of doing the very best possible in everything you attempt to do. The idea of going full speed, giving it all you got, and pouring yourself completely out gives us an understandable concept. The concept that is strange is the motive by which this passage gives us for performing in such a manner. The reason we are to do everything with our very best is basically because we cannot take none of it with us when we die. There would be many that would argue that since it cannot be taken with us then what is the point of giving our best. To them it would make sense to say “what’s the point” and then not even care about what they did and how they did it.
I think God is honest enough to give us truth even knowing that we may receive truth in a negative manner. However, I would also argue that for the same reason a person would approach life with carelessness could also be the motivating factor that makes us give our very best. If I cannot take it with me then why in the world would I want to leave something in the tank. If it is not used then we will lose it. Once death happens there are no second chances. Time is already a thief and we have to realize that once death occurs we do not get another chance to do it again. When this life is over we do not need to have any regrets. If we are going to succeed then succeed having done the best we could do. If we are going to fail then we need to fail going full speed.
When I get to my finish line, I am praying they are laying a body that is used to the fullest in the grave. I pray they lay a body in the grave that is completely and totally exhausted from having poured everything into this life. I want nothing left in the tank. When I cross the finish line I want people to know that he did all he could do. He gave it all. We do not get to reuse this life or get second chances at it. If we have control over how much effort we exert then we need to exert it all. Holding back always yields regrets.