Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! Romans 11:33
The Basic Bible Truth
I know enough about God to know that I don’t know enough about God. The closer we get to God, the bigger and more majestic He becomes. We have Scripture to help us understand Him, but it requires some effort on our part to study His Word, to dig deep and peel back the layers to see the truth that we will find there.
A Multiple Layer Picture
With a little effort, this can be done digitally. I originally did this with overhead transparencies. I scanned a set as an example of how I would do this.
Detail Drawing 1
Detail Drawing 2
Detail Drawing 3
Detail Drawing 4
When all four drawings are layered directly over one another, they form a reasonable rendition of the original sketch. Each sketch is totally different and unique. None of them have any lines in common. It requires all of them to see the picture well.
God is infinite. That is very difficult to comprehend. It is astonishing that an infinite God can introduce Himself to us in the pages of a book as small as the Bible. And yet, He has accomplished just that. Everything that we need to know about God is there in printed form for us to look at and study. As we begin to study the Bible, we find bits and pieces here and there that give us a little glimpse of one or another character trait of God. We take each of those little flashes of light and compile them to begin to form a more complete picture of who God really is.
In much the same way as a diamond cutter begins to shape a diamond. He will cut face after face, exposing the brilliant interior of the diamond. Before it is cut, a diamond looks to be just another rock. But when all of the facets are complete, the light refracts in the mineral and dazzles everyone close to it. The more facets we cut on our diamond of understanding God, the more beautiful He becomes.
And those facets do not just show up automatically. We have to “cut” them. It requires study on our part to do it properly. There are things just below the surface of the printed words in the Bible that can be studied and savored. The deep things of God are to found deep in the Word. Allow me to show you just one example. We go back in time to near the end of King David’s life. To understand the heart of David is difficult from our vantage point. We see a boy with his sheep, a young man challenging giants, and a man with huge mistakes as well as huge successes in his life. Remember it was David who brought the nation together, who planned and financed Solomon’s temple, and who wrote many of the Psalms that today still touch many hearts. One Psalm, written by David, places our attention appropriately upon the secret of his success as a man of God. It is a song he wrote as he neared the end of his life and is now recorded in II Samuel 22. Verse 36 is a short thought and quite easy to just overlook or read past without a second look. It places everything into perfect perspective. Thou hast given me the shield of thy salvation: and thy gentleness has made me great. Our relationship with our Lord is based upon his gift of salvation. It is the foundation block that everything else stands upon. David also understood that nothing in his own self was of any lasting value. The gentleness of God, His bending down towards man in love, His tender care for us, His compassion delicately touching our lives—that is what makes anyone great. The understanding of that truth may allow any of us to develop into men and women after God’s own heart.
The gentleness of God—another facet in the diamond of His beauty. Keep looking for those facets. Read the Word and study it. Nothing will change your life like that Book can. Our children grew up during the advent of VCR tapes. And they each had their favorite movie. For our oldest daughter, it was “The Little Mermaid.” We would watch the video, and then rewind it, watch it again, and rewind, over and over and over. To this day, I could lip sync nearly the entire movie, including every song. I know it well, and would resoundingly choose to never watch it again. However, I have read through the Bible many, many times now, and each time I go through it, it becomes only more and more fascinating and interesting. It never gets boring.
The picture is complete when all of the layers are superimposed upon each other. They each bring a bit of information to the whole. When they are all present, the work of art is complete. As we study and learn to know our God, the bits and pieces we are capable of assembling confirm that we do serve an amazing God who’s character is incredible and perfect. I know that there is so much that I don’t yet know. But I will study so that I can know more and more.