Our eternal destiny will not be determined by our church attendance, good works, or religious devotion. Instead, there will be a simple question that must be answered – do we know God?
“Knowing God” is the single most important decision of our lives.
We all have an innate knowledge of the existence of God. However, knowing about God is not the same as having a relationship with Him. In fact, Jesus teaches that just because we recognize who God is, we may not be saved:
Matthew 7: 21-23“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!”
So how do we “know” God? Like any close relationship, “knowing God” begins by intentionally spending time together.God is always there for us, but He wants us to pursue Him. He specifically designed ways for us to communicate with and experience Him.
Jeremiah 29:12-13 Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me and I will listen to you. And you will seek me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.
We talk with Him in Prayer. Prayer is a way that we treat God, as God. It’s a conversation leading to an encounter with Him. A vibrant prayer life has a cumulative effect on our lives producing a joy evident to those around us – peaceful, selfless, and full of the fruits of the Spirit. Prayer turns our hearts to God.
We let Him talk to us through His Word. The Bible isn’t just a book about God – it’s a book from God. He reveals Himself to us through His Word. We learn of His passions, His desires, and His commands. In Scripture we find wisdom for life and revelation of the true nature of God. God will “open the eyes of our hearts” to help us know Him more fully and deeply as we read His Word. His Word helps us understand the richness of the glory of our inheritance.
We “know God” through His people. God created us to live in community with others connected by our common faith. We encounter God through the Church and other communities of believers. Worshiping together and learning from each other helps us grow in our faith and knowledge of God.
Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
Knowing God leads to understanding who He is. God exists in three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. While it is impossible for us fully understand all aspects of the Trinity, we commonly think of God as our Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ as our Savior, and the Holy Spirit as our Helper. Each of these descriptions are Biblically accurate but certainly not complete.
Through Christ and the indwelling Holy Spirit, our lives can be filled with God, and we can experience the joy and fruit of truly knowing Him.