Nuggets from “Knowing God” – J.I. Packer

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11.09.12 [either quotations or paraphrased]

CHAPTER 1: THE STUDY OF GOD

  • Psalmist of 119’s supreme desire was to know and enjoy God
    • They valued knowledge about God simply as a means to this end
    • We must seek, in studying God, to be led to God. It was for this purpose, that revelation was given, and it is to this use that we must put it (p.22-23)
  • Meditation is the activity of calling to mind, dwelling on and applying things we know- the works, the ways, the purposes and promises of God.
    • An activity of holy thought, consciously performed in the presence of God, under the eye of God, by the help of God, as a means of communion with God
    • Why do we meditate?           
      • To clear your mental and spiritual vision of God, and to let His truth make its full and proper impact on your mind and heart (p.23)

 

CHAPTER 2: THE PEOPLE WHO KNOW THEIR GOD

  • Those who really know God never brood on might-have-beens, they never think of the things they have missed, but only of what they have gained(p.25)
    • Philippians 3:7-10
      • But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to his death;
      • What “rubbish” means: dung
      • You don’t spend time nostalgically dreaming of manure. But this is what many of us do. It shows how little we have in the way of true knowledge of God. (p.25)
  • [Knowing vs. knowing about]           
    • We can know many things about God – this doesn’t mean you truly know God
    • **A little knowledge of God is worth more than a great deal of knowledge about Him
    • The two ideas
      • One can know a great deal about God without much knowledge of Him
      • One can know a great deal about godliness without much knowledge about God
        • “The question is not whether we are good at theology… The question is, can we say, simply, honestly, not because we feel that as evangelicals we ought to, but because it is a plain matter of fact, that we have known God, and that because we have known God the unpleasantness we have had, or the pleasantness we have not had, through being Christians does not matter to us? If we really knew God, this is what we would be saying, and if we are not saying it, that is a sign that we need to face ourselves more sharply with the difference between knowing God and merely knowing about Him.” (p.27)
  • [Evidence of knowing God]
    • “Losses and ‘crosses’ cease to matter to them” (p.27)
    • Those who know God have great energy for God
      • The action taken by those who know God is their reaction to the anti-God trends they see
      • “While their God is being defied or disregarded, they cannot rest; they feel they must do something; the dishonor done to God’s name goads them into action.” (p.28)
      • “It is simply that those who know their God are sensitive to situation in which God’s truth and honor are being directly or tacitly jeopardized, and rather than let the matter go by default will force the issue on men’s attention and seek thereby to compel a change of heart about it – even at personal risk.” (p.28)
      • People who know their God are before anything else people who pray, and the first point where their zeal and energy for God’s glory come to expression is in their prayers.” (p.28)
    • Those who know God have great thoughts of God
      • History is “His story” – the unfolding of His eternal plan
      • These thoughts filled Daniel’s mind (p.29)
    • Those who know God show great boldness for God
      • They may find the determination of the right course to take agonizingly difficult, but once they are clear on it they embrace it boldly and without hesitation. (p.30)
    • Those who know God have great contentment in God
      • “There is no peace like the peace of those whose minds are possessed with full assurance that they have known God, and God has known them, and that this relationship guarantees God’s favor to them in life, through death and on for ever.” (p.31)
      • This is seen in Romans 8
      • Example in Daniel 3:15-18: Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego

 

[written in the possible event I lose my notebook, emphasis added]

 

 

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This entry was published on November 11, 2012 at 4:41 am and is filed under Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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