This is my first lecture to some college students as I was invited to give a lecture about the importance of the word of God to our everyday life. At first, I was a bit nervous as I am not used to speak within a circle of college student class as I am handling children’s ministry like Saturday Bible school with the kids, and even during the medical missions, still I am a teacher to the small ones. But this time, God brought me to people of my same age which makes me nervous.
The Lord led me to the topic about the importance of “Knowing God Biblically” and its application to our daily life. I started the lecture by reassuring them that I understand their needs to study well to get a high grade and pass their subject for a better future. However, to awaken their mind, I challenge them with this question, “What is the greatest need of a man”? (Answer: The greatest need of men is to get to know the God of the Bible as He revealed Himself in the scripture) Is it to obtain riches? To have suitors and to marry someday? How many of you today have read the Bible as you woke up this morning? How many of you here whispered a prayer as you start the day? I believed these questions are a challenge to all of us.
Amazingly, a number raised their hands as they acknowledge themselves that they started their day with a prayer and reading of the Bible, and for that I complemented them. The next question that I gave the students is this, “Why is it that we have to study God”? “ Why is it that knowing God is our greatest need as a Christian?” The answer is found in Jeremiah 9:23-24
“Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD, which exercises lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth,for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.”
Knowing this verse I pointed out the truth that with the lack of the knowledge of God, we will be destroyed (Hosea 4:6) as His word is the lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path (Psalm 119-:105). And without the knowledge of God, we will miss the chance to worship, and enjoy an intimate relationship with a God who is “loving and a righteous judge”.
As the discussion goes on, I feel relieved as I looked at the faces of the students listening carefully, as I trust that God’s word is quick and powerful, sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of thoughts and intents of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12). I believed that the word of God that time is working in the hearts of the students, as it is “quick and powerful”.
Knowing that God’s word is our guidance to our everyday life (Psalm 119:105), I moved forward with the consequences of the lack of God’s knowledge to every believer according to Pastor John Snyder to warn them. These are some of the few that I shared among them.
1) There will be a false morality due to the culture’s influence instead of the influence of the word of God.
2) False Faith as not knowing the God of the Bible would mean a false worship of a “god of our own imagination” since we do not know who we are worshipping for. Can you love someone without knowing that person? So I leave this as a challenge among the students.
As the discussion continues, I challenge them again with this question, “How are we going to get to know God if we are too busy with other things that has no eternal value”? For the scripture is very clear with the fact that we have to seek God above all things instead of seeking for the things that has no eternal value.
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things will be added unto you”. (Matthew 6:33).
If you will follow the Lord, surely He will give you the things that can glorify Him, not necessarily riches, but He will give us the things that will make us see Him clearly through the lens of the scripture, things that will exalt Him and not us.
“But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:”. (Matthew 6:20)
At this point of time, our world is getting darker and darker due to the wrong influences such as the Hollywood stars that gives people a wrong view of themselves. For the Bible is very clear that a Christian must be conformed to the image and likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and not to be conformed to the world. In the word of John Macarthur he explains that, “the goal of of God’s predestined purpose for His own is that they would be made like Jesus Christ”.
“For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the first born among many brethren” (Romans 8:29).
From this verse, I told the class that the ultimate goal of our Christian life is to be conformed to the image and likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God. That is why we have to know Him though the scripture and live a life of holiness, of Christ likeness.
Now let’s have a study of who God is and His character according to Isaiah chapter 40. In this verse, a prophet was sent (Isaiah) to warn Israel that they will be taken into captives by the Babylonian empire. However the everlasting God of the Bible still gives the people a hope despite of their idolatrous heart, giving them a chance to repent and to behold His incomprehensible glory.
1) Verse 1 starts with “Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God”. As I was reading this, I can feel God’s unconditional love for His people despite of their sin, indeed He is the God of comfort. How merciful God is isn’t it? For despite of the sin of the Israelites, still he comforts them, leaving them no orphan at all.
2) Verse 5 : “And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it”. – Notice the phrase “for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it” indicates that God is sovereign, what He says will be fulfilled.
3) Verse 8: the grass withered, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever. (This verse described that God’s word is the ultimate word that we have to obey as it is the only word that will last. Indeed God’s word is our rock, for He is our rock and salvation. (Psalm 18:2))
4) Verse 13: Who hath directed the Spirit of the LORD, or being his counselor hath taught him?- This verse shows that God is an all knowing God, He is of no need of any counselor, for He is God, we cannot fathom His infinite wisdom. (Romans 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! )
5) Verse 10: “Behold the Lord GOD will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.”- This verse described God as a God with a strong arm that is capable of ruling everything as He is “GOD”. Unlike how the world view God today as a God of their own imagination with a weak hand that it cannot save. The God in the Bible is so strong with a strength that is beyond our finite imagination.
6) Verse 18: To whom then will ye liken God? or what likeness will ye compare unto him? This verse signifies that we cannot equal or compare God to anything or anyone as He is “God”. In fact God is a very jealous God.
“For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God: Exodus 34:14”
7) Verse 31: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.- This passage described God as the source of our hope and strength. He liken someone as an “eagle” soaring high and renewed every day if only they will learn to obey His word and wait for Him
These are the verses I shared to the students, hoping that the word of God will work within their hearts and be saved. After that I quoted some faithful pastors to challenge them to get to know God and who He is as He revealed Himself in the scripture. I started with Pastor John Snyder who says that,
“You think of all the people we think are interesting and fascinating. Is not God the most interesting and fascinating? Is not God the most interesting being, most captivating, most attractive, most impressive, most beneficial, and of such infinite variety, ageless, that you cannot find His company mundane and monotonous”. So as a my reader, do you agree to what Pastor Snyder that he is the most interesting being to get to know with? I must say, ofcourse He is, for our searching for Him never ends as He is infinite, for He alone is God and worthy to be praised.
In addition, I challenge the students to be obsessed in knowing God instead of being obsessed with knowing the worldly trend that gives a false view of themselves. As Pastor Eifion Evans said:
“A Christian must have a passion for Him (God), an obsession for Him, when we think of Him Biblically”. Now how about you who read this? What are the things that your obsessed with? Are you obsessed and concerned with the things of God that has eternal value? Or are you someone who is obsessed with things that will not last?
As I end the class, I challenged them once again to have an attitude like the psalmist who says,
“Whom have I in heaven but thee? And there is none upon the earth that I desire beside thee.” Psalm 73:25
I pray that this blog will challenge my reader to know God and who He is as He revealed Himself from the pages of the Bible.