It is quite difficult for Christians to understand the ways of God, mainly because they continue to think of God in terms of humanity. God is not a man (Numbers 23:19). He does not think or act like man. For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9. Also, it is impossible to understand the ways and thoughts of God with human intellect. Trust in the Lord with all your heart; and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. Proverbs 3:5-7. The evil He speaks of here is the evil of trying to understand the ways of God with your own natural abilities.
“Then how shall we learn of Him?” Trust in the Lord with all your heart. We must learn to understand Him with the heart. The Word of God is written in a book – the Bible. Therefore, man tries to understand the Scriptures in the same way he would with any book. It won’t work! The moment you do that you revert back to the ways of man. God and the things of God (His Word) must be understood with the heart. You can only perceive God, His ways, and His Word with the heart. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8. The heart must be pure. What makes the heart impure? The heart is not pure when the thoughts and ways of man are in it. What makes the heart pure? It is a work that only God can do. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you. Ezekiel 36:26.
What is the heart? The heart we speak of is not the organ that pumps the blood in your body. It is your spirit. Man is body, soul, and spirit. I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. I Thessalonians 5:23. Man is triune in nature. His body is his physical self. His soul is the expression of what he is; that is, his emotional and mental makeup. His spirit is that which God breathes into man. Also, man in his fallen state is considered dead, spiritually speaking, because he is totally engrossed in the ways of man and is not alive unto God. And you He has made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins; wherein in time past you walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience. Ephesians 2:1-3. However, just because a person has become a Christian doesn’t necessarily mean that He understands the thoughts and ways of God. That must be learned, which means the heart still needs to be purified.
It is common for Christians to think of God and the things of God on a time line. In other words, they interpret Scripture in the realm of time. As long as we do that we will not truly understand the Word of God. Man lives in his natural state historically on a time line. He is born in time, lives in the realm of time, and at some point on the time line he dies. So quite naturally that is the way he thinks. But that is not so with God. God lives in the realm of eternity. Eternity is not time without end; it is the absence of time. Therefore, if we are going to understand the Scriptures properly we must learn how to understand them in terms of eternity rather than in terms of time, and the things of eternity can only be understood with the heart.
Ezekiel 12:21-22 And the Word of the Lord came to me, saying,
22 Son of man, what is that proverb that you have in the land of Israel, saying, The days are prolonged, and every vision fails?
They could not believe the fulfillment of God’s Word was near at hand. Time was passing; the vision was failing. Their unbelief kept them isolated. This is the same thing Jesus accused the Pharisees of. They had shut the door to the Kingdom by only teaching what God did in the past and what He was going to do in the future. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the Kingdom of heaven against men; you neither go in yourselves, nor allow others to go in. Matthew 23:13. The Pharisees kept God in the past and in the future by their teaching. As it was in Israel, so it was in Judah, and so it is in the religion of Christianity. The days are prolonged, meaning the fulfillment of His Word is in the future and not available in the present. For that reason the vision fails.
Ezekiel 12:26-27 Again the Word of the Lord came to me, saying,
27 Son of man, behold, they of the house of Israel say, The vision that he sees is for many days to come, and he prophesies of the times that are far off.
God’s people were only relating to His Word in terms of their own world. They lived on a time line, so they interpreted the Word of the Lord in that way, too. It is the same in the religion of Christianity. They see the prophesies and promises of God as being fulfilled in the future. They do not understand that “all things are now accomplished that the Scripture might be fulfilled” (John 19:28). God doesn’t need to do anything else. It is now up to us to believe in His finished work. The apostle Paul said it this way, “God, who makes alive the dead, calls those things which are not as though they were” (Romans 4:17). Those things which are not in man’s world are already a reality in God’s world. They are already done; it is a matter of us believing in a finished work.
Ezekiel 12:28 Therefore say unto them, Thus says the Lord God; There shall none of My words be prolonged any more, but the Word which I have spoken shall be done, saith the Lord God.
Does this mean that God will finally do what He has once said? No! When He says a thing it is done by Him saying it. The moment He speaks it is accomplished. He doesn’t speak a Word and then say, “By and by I will bring it to pass.” Why will His words not be prolonged anymore? It is not because He will suddenly bring them to pass, but it will be because people will begin believing His Word. You bring the Word that is already a reality in God’s world into your world when you really believe. The only thing that keeps God’s Word from being fulfilled in your life is unbelief. The things of God’s world will become a reality in your world through your believing – not believing with your mind, but with your heart.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8. The pure in heart will see God, will be aware of His world, and will understand the thoughts and ways of God.
Copyright © 2007 by Henry DuBose