After asking a few simple questions like, “Who made the earth, sun and stars?” he asked them, “Who knocked down the walls of Jericho?”
All the boys acknowledged their ignorance. None of them could tell him who knocked down the walls of Jericho.
At the church’s next business meeting, the preacher expressed his dismay at the young boys’ lack of Bible knowledge, “Not one of them knows who knocked down the walls of Jericho.”
The group was oddly silent until finally, one man spoke up. “Preacher, this appears to be bothering you quite a lot. But, I’ve known these boys since they were all born and they’re all good boys. If they said they don’t know, then I believe them. Let’s just take some money out of the repair fund, fix the walls, and forget about it.”
Sadly, some folks are almost that ignorant regarding what the Bible says. However, maybe worse is that many today, sometimes even among professed Christians claim to know the mind of God about things not revealed in the Bible
In his letter to the Corinthian church, the apostle Paul makes very clear about what we can know about the mind and will of God.
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. (1 Cor 2:9-12)
Too often I hear people claim things like this, “I just know this is what God wants me to do.” Or “I just feel lead by God to do ________.” Or “I know God wants me to be happy and would want me to ______.” Or “I just feel deep down in my heart this is right.” You get the picture.
How can I know the will and mind of the Almighty? Only one way. By reading what has been revealed by the Holy Spirit. There is no other way.
Paul expressed it this way in Ephesians 3:3-5.
“how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already, by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets.”
People too often try to figure out what God wants without ever consulting His Word, the Bible. I’ve known of couples who divorce without any scriptural reason, remarry and claim it was the will of God. “God wants me to be happy,” they conjecture.
Homosexual behavior today is accepted, promoted and even celebrated as something that Jesus would approve of if He was alive today. Yet, absolutely nothing in the Biblical record indicates that He would approve of this kind of sexual conduct.
Some churches today engage in all kinds of secular activities, provide entertainment, pursue business interests and promote social reforms, all the while forgetting their God-given mission for the church revealed in the book of Acts. They believe they are doing the will of God, yet God has not sanctioned their activities.
The prophet Isaiah reminds us that God’s ways and God thoughts are above ours, just as “the heavens are higher than the earth. It is useless and dangerous to speculate on what God wants apart from what He has revealed to us in his book, the Bible.
I have even heard of those who claim to be Christians pursuing some course of action while asserting that they believed this is what God would want for their lives. Yet, there is no revealed evidence suggesting their beliefs are valid.
All of this is a subjective approach to the Bible and to our religious activity. An objective approach is to simply let God speak through what He was given us in His Word. All other ideas are nothing more than human opinion.
Let us return to reading the Bible. Studying the Bible. Believing the Bible. And then behaving in the way the Bible directs us.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman