When I was a new Christian someone shoved a copy of “Knowing God” into my hands. I had been going to church my whole life, but I freely confess I didn’t know much about God, let alone know Him personally. Oh, I knew He was loving and forgiving, after all, as one German poet said, “That’s his job”. But I knew nothing of his holiness, power, or even why grace was necessary. In Chapter 1, J.I. Packer quotes C.H. Spurgeon from over a century earlier.
There is something exceedingly improving to the mind in a contemplation of the Divinity. It is a subject so vast, that all our thoughts are lost in its immensity; so deep, that our pride is drowned in its infinity. Other subjects we can compass and grapple with; in them we feel a kind of self-content, and go our way with the thought, “Behold, I am wise”. But when we come to this master-science, finding that our plumb-line cannot sound its depth, and that our eagle eye cannot see its height, we turn away with the thought that vain man would be wise, but he is like a wild donkey’s colt and with solemn exclamation, “I am but of yesterday, and know nothing”. No subject of contemplation will tend more to humble the mind, than thoughts of God… C.H. Spurgeon quoted by J.I. Packer, Knowing God, p.13
The Apostle John grasped the vastness of God when he said in John 1:18 “No one has seen God at any time”, but then he goes on to say, “God the only Son, who is in the arms of the Father, He has explained Him.” Or as the ESV translates it “…he has made him known.” This week in John 1:6-18 we will trace the journey of God “The Word”, who left the glory of heaven and God the Father to “dwell among us” so that we could know Him, love Him, understand Him, and trust Him. His life, death on the cross, burial, and resurrection shines the light of truth which John summarizes as “grace upon grace”. What a Savior!
I read that first chapter of Knowing God almost 45 years ago. I’ve been learning and growing ever since. But even now there are times when I still feel like “I am but of yesterday, and know nothing.” There is so much more about God to know and enjoy! Aren’t you glad you’ll never stop being in awe of God?
Because of Jesus,