You Won't Understand Everything

“Nicodemus said to him, ‘How can these things be?’ ” (John 3:9).

Some have frowned upon Nicodemus for asking this question, but we should really commend him. Asking questions to God is always a wise activity, as we wrote about earlier this week. He will not lead us astray. But in asking Jesus, Nicodemus revealed a condition we all face: We do not understand everything about God and spiritual things. Even as we grow as Christians, sometimes the questions keep mounting and we cannot seem to find answers. How can we best deal with this?

1. Search the Scriptures to learn what we can.
We cannot know everything, but we can know much more than we do. Paul, in writing to young Timothy, pointed out the advantages Timothy had growing up as a Christian:

“But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:14-15).

We should search the Bible and read it daily. We will grow in grace and knowledge, and receive guidance for the journey.

2. Recognize that some things are known to God alone, and it will always be that way. At times, we want to pry into things that God has not permitted us to know. For example, we know nothing about His specific plans for our futures, other than He will take us to Heaven one day. But we cannot say with any confidence where we’ll be a year from now. Only God knows:

“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law” (Deuteronomy 29:29).

We shouldn’t grow frustrated in our attempts to make sense of everything; God will reveal what He wants us to know in His good time. Until then, we can study those things He revealed in His Word and keep growing.

3. Give yourself a lifetime to learn about God.
Some people might suppose, “If I went to seminary I would know everything there is to know.” But true spiritual knowledge takes a lifetime to acquire, and we must give ourselves time to grow. As we apply the Bible to life’s situations, we grow in wisdom. The more we apply it, the wiser we become. But it takes time, and we should take the time to learn about God, even a lifetime.

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