Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Spiritual understanding or 'seeing'

Paul writing his first letter to the Church in Corinth talks about the need of a kind of 'second' or spiritual sight which is not something we are born with or at least, if we have, has been corrupted or disfigured by sin. He writes to those who have been given this insight:

"We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has feely given us." (1 Corinthians 2:12)

In other words we are like people born blind - spiritually blind - and who need the miracle of healing to help us see. I came across the following passage from one of the Navigator's wonderful Bible Study Courses (click here) which illustrates the idea perfectly:

The challenge of revealing truth to the blind hit home for me when I was in my early twenties. God used an ordinary experience to teach me how miraculous His revelation through Scripture really is. I was working my way through college as a waiter at a steakhouse when a blind couple was seated in my section. Until then, I had never interacted with a blind person. I was not aware how blindness not only impairs the way a person moves through the world but also affects how he or she understands the environment. As I was taking the couple’s order, they began to question me about the differences in steak temperatures and how the steaks were cooked.

“What is the difference between rare and medium rare?” asked the gentleman.

I had been trained to explain that rare was a cool red center, while medium rare was a warm red center, and
so on. This is where the tricky part came in. How do you explain a cool red center to a person who has never seen the color red? This is the challenge God took upon Himself when He chose to reveal Himself and His works to us. He had to explain grand spiritual concepts to His creation, who had been blinded to these
truths — concepts such as unconditional love and forgiveness, sin and spiritual death, and good and evil. In essence, God had to explain the color red to people who could understand only black and white.

It is through His Word that God works. It is the most reliable standard by which we can determine where and how God is working. Without God revealing His ways to us, we are totally blind to His hand always working among us. Our frail humanity limits our ability to clearly see Him. But the Bible, in its most basic
interpretation, opens the eyes of our souls and makes sense out of our lives and our place in God’s vast story. God uses the written account of His works to not only allow us to see our brokenness but also catch a glimpse of His undeniable love for us. Without this revelation, our attempts to connect with God would be based on our own best guesses of what we think He may want from us.

God, in His generous grace, revealed Himself to us. We don’t have to aimlessly wander about, blindly trying to configure the correct formula that constitutes a relationship with Him.

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