LEARNING THE HIDDEN TRUTHS
“It is the glory of God to conceal a thing but the honor of kings is to search out a matter” - Prov. 25:2.
OUR THIRD POINT IS “TO SEARCH OUT A MATTER.”
Again, search means “to penetrate, hence to examine intimately, find out or seek out.” How then are we to search out a matter? The Lord has quickened eight ways to me on how this is done:
1) BY THE WORK OF THE PROPHETS.
Read I Peter 1:10-12 and notice – “the prophets…, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you;” and “…When it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ,” And also “…But unto us they did minister the things.” I believe there would be a serious lack without the prophecies, the testimonies, and the ministry of the prophets. These things are very fundamental and necessary to understanding God’s Word. We receive the good from their preaching. II Peter 1:19-21, especially verse 21, “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” These prophets spoke by the Holy Spirit, and don’t we need to listen to what the Spirit has to say also? Rom. 15:4, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning;” and II Tim. 3:16-17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable. For doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in Righteousness; that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” We need to understand the work and the ministry of the prophets if we are to learn from them. Their lives can and should profit us. And as we learn from them we are being built up unto a perfect man – the new man – the life of Christ within. Read Rom. 16:25-26, “…according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began. But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith.”
2) BY THE MINISTRY OF THE APOSTLES.
Remember in Mark 16:15, Jesus said, go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature,” And this was a work that the apostles did. This was their responsibility. Certainly others had a part and do have a part, but they laid the foundation. Ephesians 4:11-12, “And He gave to some apostles; and to some, prophets…for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” These have a past in the perfecting work that God is doing in our hearts. Praise God for them! In Eph. 2:20 we see that we “are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone.” Can we do without this foundation? Not if we are to stand and withstand and come to a place of maturity. The foundation is a very important part of a building. A building is only as good as its foundation. The superstructure depends upon it. If the foundation is weak and crumbles over time, the building will weaken and eventually be ruined. Thank God we have a good, strong foundation that has stood the test of time.
3) BY PAUL’S REVELATION.
Read Col. 1:24-29. God gave Paul the revelation – the interpretation – to these mysteries that had been hidden in ages past. Also consider Gal. 1:11-12. Paul labored and strived according to the grace of God that was at work in him to preach, to warn every man and to teach them so that all who lay hold of their opportunities would be perfect in Christ Jesus. We need Paul’s gospel!
4) BY FAITHFUL MINISTERS, PREACHING GOD’S WORD.
Ephesians 3:2-10, God has given grace to faithful ministers “to preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; and to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery.” Again in Eph. 4:11-12, “He gave…to some, evangelists and to some, pastors, and to some, teachers; for the perfecting of the saints.” I believe that it is very important to sit under the ministry of the Word. If our heart is right before God, He will quicken something to our heart that will help in that perfecting work He is doing in our lives.
5) BY DAILY STUDY.
Acts 17:11, “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” I believe that we need to receive the Word that God is speaking to us with a readiness of mind (in the NIV – “with great eagerness”). But also it is important that we search the scriptures daily ourselves to see whether what we are being taught is true. We need a personal daily study on our own to come to an understanding of God’s Word. Paul told Timothy in II Tim. 2:15 study to show approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” We need to know the Word of God for ourselves, in part so that when we are asked questions regarding our faith we can give a scriptural answer. Not what our pastor said, or our teacher said, or an evangelist said; but this is what God’s Word has to say!
6) BY MEDITATION.
I Tim. 4:15-16 “Meditate upon these things, give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all.” God can and does bless those who meditate on His Word day and night; consider Psalm 1. God promises to make us prosperous, successful, and victorious as we learn to meditate on His Word, Joshua 1:7-9. We need to meditate on what we have heard taught and preached upon and on what we have studied and read.
7) BY PRAYER
Eph. 1:15-19, Paul prayed for the Ephesian saints “that God…may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him; the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of His calling, and, what the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe.” Paul realized that despite the most gifted ministers preaching under the anointing of the spirit it would not be enough to bring the saints to maturity. Personal study though vital, is not enough. Meditation, though very important, can not bring a child of God to maturity alone. It also takes prayer. We learn to ask God to help our understanding, to quicken His Word to our hearts and to reveal these precious truths to us. If we ask, He will answer. He is faithful to do so. I love the song “My Precious Bible.” Verse five reads; “I love my Bible; may I ne’er consult it but with faith and prayer.”
8) BY THE QUICKENING POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
I Cor. 2:7-12, “But God hath revealed them unto us by His Spirit; for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea the deep things of God.” Often as we are reading, studying or listening to the Word given forth, the Spirit will quicken a portion to us, we never saw or noticed before. The Word will become clear and make sense. The scriptures will come together. It is the Holy Spirit that gives this understanding to us.
So we need: 1)the work of the prophets; 2) the ministry of the apostles; these prophets and apostles laid the foundation. We need as well 3) Paul’s revelation; 4) faithful ministers who preach God’s Word; 5) personal daily study; 6) meditation on the Word; 7) prayer to ask God to make His Word clear to our hearts; and certainly we need 8) the quickening power of the Holy Spirit to reveal the Word to our heats. All of these are beneficial in coming to a full knowledge of God. All of these are instrumental in the development of the life of Christ within and to enable us to come to the measure of the stature and fullness of Christ, that the new creation life might be fully developed in us.
We will not come to perfection overnight or to a complete understanding of God’s Word instantly, “For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line; here a little, and there a little.” May we be willing to grasp a little here and a little there.
Rev. 19:7, “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him; for the marriage of the Lord is come, and His wife hath made herself ready.” She learned His Word and to do those things that are pleasing in His sight. Praise His name!