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True Knowing part 2

A True knowing – Part 2

Subtitle: Growing in the Knowledge of God

In part one of this series we talked about what true knowledge of God is and what it is not. We learned that this knowledge goes far beyond intellectual head knowledge. It is a personal, intimate knowing that comes through a relationship with God. Let’s pick up from the first article with the Apostle Paul praying for the Colosse church.

For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.” (Col 1:9-10)

In the first article we looked at the first part of the prayer. Put your attention on the latter part. “…being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.

Paul is asking that they would be fruitful and increase in knowledge of God. It would be easy to interpret this is “be fruitful and read your Bible as much as possible.” But the Greek word for “increasing” gives us some important clues that Paul meant something else entirely. The Greek word is auxanō and it means “to cause to grow, augment.”

In nearly every other instance where the word is used it is translated as grow. Not only that but the Greek word in this instance is found in the passive tense, meaning it is something received. It is not an action Paul is praying the church at Colosse would do but rather a position of receiving.

This truth is furthered by the fact that Paul prayed they would be “fruitful in every good work.” If I grow vegetables in my garden I cannot will them to grow. I plant the seeds and provide the atmosphere for growth and the plant receives and grows. Likewise, God puts His Word (seed) in our soil (our hearts) and He waits for the fruit to come. Our job is to receive the Word and let it mature.

Now, the condition of the soil is important. If a farmer throws seed in the wrong place it certainly will not grow. We see this powerfully in the Parable of the Sower. In the parable there were four types of soil where the seed was placed – wayside, stony places, thorns and good ground.

Jesus explained each.

The wayside: “When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart.” (Matt 13:19)

Stony places: “…this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles.” (Matt 13:20,21)

Thorns: “…is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful.” (Matthew 13:22)

Good ground: “…is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.” (Matthew 13:23)

We see the first three as great enemies to our spiritual growth. Every time before reading the Word I ask the Holy Spirit to give me understanding of what I am reading. We are in great need to have deep roots in God. This way when trouble comes because of the Word (and it will!) we will have deep roots to weather the storm. We must pick out the thorns in our lives – cares and worries being chief among them. To care or worry is the opposite of walking in faith. We see Peter stopped walking on water once he let worry in. “But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!” (Matthew 14:30)

God greatly desires that we grow in the knowledge of Him. When praying today I felt Him say that growing in the knowledge of God is to “fill in the shoes, to come to full potential.” You see, the Word of God is a seed within us. That seed has potential within it. God wants us to get a hundredfold out of it. We need to be in a position of receiving the Seed but also watching for and dealing with the wayside, stony places and thorns.

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