Weekly Sabbath Survey
Ask, Seek, Knock — 8-23-2014
Throughout the history of Christianity there have been those who taught that the laity should not be too much interested in the deeper things of God. It would seem that the untrained among us might be confused or misled if they went prying into those hidden mysteries. Still others contend that there are no mysteries, we already know everything because we have Jesus and the King James Bible.
At a point near the end of her life, my mother became very interested in things about YHVH and His ways that she had never looked into or paid attention to before. She began to study almost every day, for many hours on end. My daddy came into the room where she had the Bible and other books spread around her, reading and looking up things. He said, “You know reading the Bible too much can make you crazy.” He was serious. I learned later that this was a common belief when my parents were growing up.
But all that is very contrary to Jewish thought. They believed that ALL men should be studying at least a little. For centuries they have had several named levels of study almost like grades in school. A person may choose the level where they are comfortable and do not wish to go any further. They may continue to study, but they will be going over the same material all the time. But some wanted to go up higher.
Jesus told us to Ask, Seek and Knock. (A.S.K.) [Matthew 7:7-8] I think this means we are to be very proactive with our education in the faith, and our pursuit of God and all things about Him. Everything about Christianity is proactive. I don’t see Jesus as the example of passive about anything. Peaceful, yes; passive, no.
For fear of going crazy, or a timidity of hearing about things difficult to comprehend, whatever the reason, most Christians have opted to not really STUDY at all. They may limit themselves to a short daily Bible passage. But whatever they do in reading or study, they will not venture very much out of the box their denomination or parents or pastor gave them. Only the very free and very brave will look for answers to the burning questions of the heart. Only the very tough can withstand the criticism that may come from their fellows when they want to share what they feel the Lord has revealed or given to them, or just want to kick around a possibility of something a bit out of the main stream. These would be things that do not come from the pulpit. I once asked a preacher why certains fact of real significance truth were not taught in the seminaries. He said, Oh, they teach it, but the reason they don’t preach it is the teachers tell them not to because the dum-dums in the pews will just get confused and cause trouble in the congregation.
My quest began over 30 years ago, with just plain READING the Bible. What a novel idea for me! I had never been in a church that encouraged much Bible reading. The ‘read the whole Bible in a year’ thing hadn’t been started. I read the Bible through, but the first time, it took me way longer than a year. When I read it, I have to pause, think, research and pray. Everything for me seems to unfold in its own time. (God’s time.) In the past few years, I’m adding the writings of others to my quest for revelation of the hidden things of God. Why reinvent the wheel? I’m very careful and prayerful when I read what other people have to say. I pray the Lord keeps me from being led astray.
I realize not everyone is called to this level of study. Not everyone has the time to do it while raising a family and/or making a living. But I want to encourage each reader to continue with your own pursuit of answers and discovery of glorious things revealed at whatever level you are. Maybe you will hear God say, “Come up higher” like I have. Each level we go up to is more difficult than the one before. We must be led by the Holy Spirit and not run ahead of ourselves. This is a life-long pursuit to KNOW Him. Everything He reveals to us reveals more of Himself.
We run toward Him, like a child playing chase with Daddy. He is always too fast for us, and we call out, “Stop Daddy Stop!!” until He suddenly whirls around and grabs us in His arms, and we dissolve into Him in a fit of giggles. We don’t even realize at that moment that we have actually died to this Earth and its trouble, and our days of searching are over because we are HOME.
No man has ever seen, heard or imagined what wonderful things God has ready for those who love Him. But we can know these things because God has sent His Spirit to tell us, and His Spirit searches out and shows us all of God’s deepest secrets. 1 Corinthians 2:9-10
Charlene Reams Manning
Believer in the Lord Jesus Messiah
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