Knowing God, Knowing the Bible
Recently, I was reminded of this saying from my past while reading 1 Samuel 3. This is the chapter where Samuel, while still a young man, hears God calling out to him in the night. In the context of this passage, there are four statements about the Word of God that caused me to think back to this statement from my past, "You can never know God more than you know His Word."
“And the word of the LORD was rare in those days; there was no frequent vision.” 1 Samuel 3:1
“And the word of the LORD was rare in those days.” In other words, it was not an everyday experience to hear from God. Do you realize how privileged we are to live in “a day” when the revelation of God is available for us to pick up and read at any time? At any moment of the day we can “hear a word from God.” The problem today is not that “the word of the LORD is rare” but for many, it is “rare” to pick it up and read it. You can never know God more than you know his Word.
“Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him.” 1 Samuel 3:7
It is interesting to observe that the reason Samuel “did not yet know the LORD” is because “the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him.” Unless God makes himself known to us, we cannot know God. But in the Scriptures, we have the revelation of God available to us. We can know God! God has made himself known! Paul says in 2 Timothy 3:15 that the sacred writings “are able to make us wise for salvation.” You can never know God more than you know his Word.
“And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground.” 1 Samuel 3:19
That is a great statement. Sometimes when we talk about “knowing God,” we approach it with the idea of “knowing about God.” But that is not the kind of knowledge God is offering us. God calls us to actually “know him.” It is real. It is personal. And so that means we not only become readers of God’s Word, but we also seek to be doers of God’s Word. We don’t want to allow any of the God’s “words to fall to the ground.” Rather, we want them to shape the way we live. You can never know God more than you know his Word.
“And the LORD appeared again at Shiloh, for the LORD revealed himself to Samuel at Shiloh by the word of the LORD.” 1 Samuel 3:21
I love that little word “again.” God came again to Samuel. This revelation from God was not a one time occurrence in the life of Samuel. It happened again. This too needs to be our steady and daily diet. Often in the Scriptures we are encouraged to meditate day and night on God’s Word. So if you really want to know God, then a habit of the heart needs to be that word “again.” “Again” we meditate on God’s Word. “Again” we gather with God’s people to hear God’s Word read and preached. “Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” You can never know God more than you know his Word.
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