Oh to Know God More!

Posted on May 19, 2019

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By David Ettinger

The Effects of Age
At age 61, I find myself in the same boat as several other older bloggers. I am becoming more and more the victim of physical ailments, but far more burdensome, I am ever more saddened over the “lostness” of unsaved grown children. We have raised our children faithfully in the Lord, but when they reached adulthood, they turned from God.

This is a bitter thing.

As these sorrows increase, I find myself drawing closer to the Lord, clinging to Him in my longing and sadness, desiring to know Him in new ways. I want to emulate this longing to know God just as intensely as did two men of the Bible, and to similarly pursue their same desire.   

The Two Men
I consider the men I refer to the two most influential personalities in the Old and New Testament (with the exception, of course, of the Lord Jesus): Moses and Paul.

These two men were leaders of God’s new “institutions,” Israel and the Church. They both suffered physically (Moses a speaking defect, Paul a “thorn in the flesh”), and both prayed sacrificially for the salvation of their fellow Jews (Moses, Exodus 32:9-14; Paul, Romans 9:3).

But beyond anything, both had an amazingly close relationship with God, yet wanted more. Of Moses, Exodus 33:11 says: “The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend.”

Paul walked closely enough with the Lord that at end of his life he was able to confidently affirm: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day” (2 Timothy 4:7-8).

And yet, these intimate relationships were not good enough for them. They wanted more!

What They Wanted
It is both wonderful and informative to note that just following the verse telling us of the  relationship between God and Moses that the latter told the Lord: “If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. … Now show me your glory” (Exodus 33:13, 18).

Moses was not one to sit on his laurels. Yes, God spoke to him “face to face,” but Moses was not satisfied; he wanted something far deeper.

Paul communicates this desire for a deeper relationship: “I want to know Christ – yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead” (Philippians 3:10-11).

Space prohibits the explanation of this passage, but the longing, the emotion, the desire, is abundantly evident. Paul sought a relationship with Christ beyond the realm of human experience. It required a surpassing of natural fleshly wants and longings and an entrance into an intimacy with God only He could give. Moses sought the same.

To know God more; to desire Him with every fiber of our being; to walk hand in hand with Him through the sludge of this human existence should be the foremost, burning aspiration of all believers, particularly those of us whom the Lord has permitted to reach older age.

In the flesh, such a closeness cannot be fully attained, but we should strive for it. Paul acknowledged this: “… I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14). Oh that you and I may press on to the goal of knowing God more!

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