FOUNDATION TOPIC

Can We Know God?

Yes, we can know God. Because God has made himself known—in the world, in his Word, and in his Son.  

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God wants you to know him

God created us to have a relationship with him, and came to us to in the person of Jesus to make that possible. 

Theme Verse
Jeremiah 9:23-24 ESV

Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.”

Short Content

Can We Know God?

We can know God. In fact, we already do (Romans 1:18-20). We can look around creation and perceive his intelligent design behind all that’s made. Miracles abound—whether the cry of a newborn, the mystery of affection between lovers, or the powers of the ocean being held back by a mighty hand so happy humans can delight in the surf.

There’s more to this world than materials—there’s a Maker shaping them all, shaping us all into a complex story called Life. Both nature and our conscience cry out—testifying to God’s existence and urging us to worship and adore him.
God is not interested in hide-and-seek. Instead, he says, “I have not spoken in secret, from somewhere in a land of darkness; I have not said to Jacob’s descendants, ‘Seek me in vain’” (Isaiah 45:19 NIV). He wants us to find him, to know him, and to worship him.

So he spoke. He spoke for a long time through many ways (Hebrews 1:1-2). He revealed himself to men and told them to record his words. And over centuries, his gentle hand wrote his story and preserved it in the Scriptures—until the day he decided to enter the story he had written.

God sent his only son, who entered the world in the person of Jesus. “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross” (Colossians 1:19-20 NIV). This means that God the Son was pleased to wrap himself in human flesh, to come dwell among us—but for a specific purpose.

He came to tie heaven and earth back together. Long ago, God had to withdraw his immediate presence, for he is holy and good and could not dwell with we who are evil at heart (Genesis 3). We refuse to believe we are creatures. We ignore all evidence of our Creator. We hate his laws, and cannot perceive his goodness. We would rather not know him. So God initiated.

He sent his Son to make peace, and to make a way for us to know him again. But first, he had to deal with our sin, so that he could dwell with us. So God sent Jesus, his only Son, to come down in real time and history (approx. 33 AD.), to absorb the punishment that we deserve on a cross. He did this so that we could receive the blessing of knowing God personally, having all our sins forgiven—if we will turn from our sins, trust in Jesus, and follow after him.

God has spoken most clearly to us through Jesus. And Jesus commissioned some of his disciples to serve as witnesses to record what he did and taught—we have this record in the New Testament in our Bibles. These men, who we call Apostles, have told us in Scripture that we can know God, and hear his voice, when we read the words of Scripture (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21).

We can know God through the book of nature, but we will misinterpret what we are seeing until we open the book of Scripture and find where God has introduced himself. And if we are patient readers, we will finally come to read about Jesus, who has made God known to us.

We can hear God when we open up the Bible, but to believe him and to know him is a gift he must give, but also welcomes us to ask for it. For he says, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13 NIV).

Ask God to make himself known to you today. Then delight in the adventure of opening up your Bible every day and getting to know your Creator.

by Bibles.net

OPEN
YOUR BIBLE

What Does It Mean to Know God?
Article: 12 Min

The Christian Joy of Knowing God and Yourself

by Bibles.net

Verse
Isaiah 40:28-29 NKJV

Have you not known? Have you not heard? 
The Lord is the everlasting God, 
   the Creator of the ends of the earth. 
He does not faint or grow weary; 
    his understanding is unsearchable. 
He gives power to the faint, 
    and to him who has no might he increases strength. 

Praise & Worship

The Greatness of Our God

by The Worship Initiative feat. Hannah Hardin
Video: 6 Min
by The Worship Initiative feat. Hannah Hardin and John Marc Kohl

Contemporary

Isaiah 65

by Derek Gust and Tayler Gust
Video: 15 Min
by John Piper at Desiring God
Article: 7 Min

Can We Know God

“Do you know God?” How you reply to
this question may be the most
important thing you ever answer.
Once again, it all depends on what
I mean by “know.”

by Bibles.net

Verse
Isaiah 45:19 NIV

"I have not spoken in secret, from somewhere in a land of darkness; I have not said to Jacob’s descendants, ‘Seek me in vain.’ I, the Lord, speak the truth; I declare what is right." 

Article: 5 Min

Longing for God and Hearing His Voice, from A.W. Tozer

by Randy Alcorn at Eternal Perspectives Ministries

Quote

The foundation of all
true knowledge of God
must be a clear
mental apprehension
of his perfections
as revealed in Holy Scripture. 
An unknown God
can neither be
trusted, served,
nor worshipped.

J.I. Packer
Quote

Knowing God Personally

by J.I. Packer

Knowing God is a matter of personal dealing, as in all direct acquaintance with personal beings. Knowing God is more than knowing about him; it is a matter of dealing with him as he opens up to you, and being dealt with by him as he takes knowledge of you. Knowing about him is a necessary precondition of trusting in him. 

See quote source
Image

You will
seek Me and
find Me, 

when you
search for Me 
with all
your heart.

Jeremiah 29:13 NKJV
Article: 12 Min

The Study of God

This is chapter one, excerpted from J.I. Packer’s book, "Knowing God"

Verse
Proverbs 2:1-5 NKJV

"My son, if you receive my words,
And treasure my commands within you,
So that you incline your ear to wisdom,
And apply your heart to understanding;
Yes, if you cry out for discernment,
And lift up your voice for understanding,
If you seek her as silver,
And search for her as for hidden treasures;
Then you will understand the fear of the Lord,
And find the knowledge of God." 

How to Know God?
Video: 2 Min
by John Dickson at Zondervan
Verse
John 1:18 NIV

No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known. 

Article: 10 Min

Knowing God Makes All the Difference

by David Mathis at Desiring God

Quote

Whatever
you want to know
about God,
Jesus explains.

If I want to know
anything about
God, the clearest
representation
of that that I will
ever be able
to 
comprehend
is
manifest
in Jesus Christ. 

Verse
Matthew 11:27 NIV

No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. 

Article: 5 Min

“I believe in God, but Not Jesus”

by Thabiti Anyabwile at The Gospel Coalition

Video: 3 Min
by Kevin DeYoung at The Gospel Coalition

Contemporary

Shout to the Lord

by The Worship Initiative and Shane & Shane
Image

“I am the way,
the truth,
and the life.
No one comes
to the Father
except through me."

John 14:6 CSB

Contemporary

Because He's God

by Shane & Shane
Messages: 45 Min

Which Jesus?

by Matt Chandler

Quote

How To Have Confidence in Jesus

by John Piper

And so by the self-authenticating force of his incomparable character and power Jesus wins our confidence and our trust and we take him as Savior from our sin and Lord of our life. And this is not an irrational persuasion.  

It's the way all of you go about making reasonable decisions about whom you will trust in life. Will you trust this babysitter with your children, or this lawyer to give you good counsel, or this friend to keep your secret?  

You look, you listen, and eventually you are persuaded (or not) that here in this person is solid ground for your confidence. 

See quote source
Video: 5 Min
Verse
Isaiah 11:9-10 ESV

They shall not hurt or destroy 
    in all my holy mountain; 
for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord 
    as the waters cover the sea. 
In that day the root of Jesse, who shall stand as a signal for the peoples—
of him shall the nations inquire, and his resting place shall be glorious.
 

Image

This is eternal life,
that they
know you,
the only true God,
and Jesus Christ
whom you
have sent.

John 17:3 ESV
Article: 10 Min

Have You Made the “Ask” of Jesus Christ?

by Colin Smith at Unlocking the Bible

Hymns

Come to Jesus

by Jason Lovins Band
Verse
Revelation 3:20 ESV

Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. 

Verse
Philippians 3:8-9 NLT

Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith. 

Messages: 28 Min

Praying to Know God Better

by H.B. Charles Jr.

Quote

There’s one way I guarantee
you will hear God speak:
read your Bible.
If you want to hear God
speak to you audibly,
read it out loud.

Verse
Hosea 6:3 ESV 

Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth. 

Contemporary

I Want to Know You

by CityAlight
Verse
Ephesians 1:17-19 NIV

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.

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