Inspired Study from Acts 8:29-36
Let's recap. In the first Wonder Twin addition we defined what a “Wonder Twin” was in the manner that I am applying it to our biblical topic, Philip's encounter with the Holy Spirit and the Ethiopian eunuch on his why back from Jerusalem to worship a God he still does not have a relationship with and understanding about after leaving “church service”... I mean... temple worship.
Next, we examined who the Wonder Twin of the true Christian is and who the Wonder Twins of any one else, including “church-goers”, may be and we finally closed with the candid, and personal question, “Who is Your Wonder Twin?”
Only you can answer that question.
And even if you lie to yourself and the people you can deceive around you, the Spirit which you invited in for the gifts He offers will never lie to you or any one else, and will constantly petition your heart that you hear His truth and follow His voice because the gifts most church-goers so desperately seek can only be found along the path of the sacrificial, reconciled relationship with Him.
Today the final goal is to address this question, “Why?” Why submit to the Spirit and grow to have Christ as your Wonder Twin and the self-sacrificing, crucifixions of life that submission brings you to if it will only lead to trials, tribulation, tests, afflictions, and burdens in this present world? There is are very few, “Look at this new car God blessed me with!” moments on that path and in the moments that it does happen, I guarantee that is tied to a new level of sacrifice God is about to require from you that includes the use of that car. What human being, especially the human being so “privileged” to think that a working car and frequent access to it, period, is not a TREMENDOUS material blessing but in fact is simply an accompanying condition of reaching a certain age in life, would ask for the burden that the new car is tied to instead of the new car?
That is the difference between the material mis-teachings of the false church and the immaterial desires born out of a relationship with God.
ASIDE: I'm convinced that people who live in the first world are the absolute poorest in the world in concern with the spiritual fruits of God. I reach this conclusion after visiting several “third world” countries and seeing people with MUCH more joy, peace, love, faith, etc., yet, with MUCH less of the things considered vital in the first world, i.e. food, shelter, clean water, a comfortable bed/place to sleep, etc. The average “first world” church-goer would probably fall within the first month of having to live like “third world” believers (I've also noticed that there are far fewer church-goer's in the “third world” too, as I believe they don't have the luxury to seek God for the presently palpable benefits He can provide, as they tend to have to rely on Him TOTALLY for everything as there is no abundance of other securities, jobs, bank savings, wealthy family/neighbors, etc. and when one puts TOTAL trust in God, even if they die, even if they don't know if they will wake up on the next day because they haven't eaten in a week and can barely see straight for the hunger, they come to a place of INCREDIBLE faith as they see God do what He does over and over again, without any help or input from them as vessels.)
Upon approaching our target scripture today, we see the Bible provides us with the answer to our question of, “why?” and it's found in verse 30.
That word translated to “understand” (in the current KJV) is unique indeed, for the simple fact that it is not typically not translated to the word “understand” but the word “know”. Anyone who knows me and had fellowship with me during my revelation of the levels of intellect (or received this revelation from God also), knows that if you do an in-depth study of the words of intellect (knowledge, understanding, and wisdom) in the Bible, they are established in hierarchical order and their application and meaning shows the intimate connection we as humans are supposed to have between our life experiences and the wisdom of God.
To briefly recap, what most people called “wisdom” is simply broken human ties made between different gains and recordings of knowledge, which can only be gained through experience (either literal or taught), and is the lowest form of intellect. Knowledge is simply gaining awareness of a certain “what”. Knowledge gains like “fire is hot” and “hot things can burn the flesh” can lead to the “worldly wisdom” of “don't put your hand in the fire or you will get burned”. However, this “wisdom” is not a higher level of intellectual gain at all, it is simply the addition of two gains of knowledge to extrapolate a third. Understanding is the next level of intellect and is the intellectual gain of “how”. How fire works, how the disspation of heat works, and how a burn is caused is the next level of intellectual gain and includes the mastery of a subject on the terms of its expression on the physical plane. This is the highest level of intellectual man could ever hope to gain through his own inquisitions in our exploration of the universe. The last and greatest level of intellectual gain is wisdom and it is the “why”. It can only come from God as He is the only being who fully knows why things are as they are. For example, have you ever truly considered why fire is hot? I'm sure you could tell me of the entropy unresolved from a combustion reaction that lead to a dissipation of heat that can lead to more energy than a molecule can vibrationally dissipate without undergoing an irreversible change, but that is simply how heat works. The question is why does that work? We could imagine a universe where molecules have a higher capacity to remain inert because of any number of variable differences in what we call our “normal” world and fire would consequently take on different qualities and natures. So why? Why is it as it is and not how it could be? This question can only be answered from the One who created the system and not from the ones who observe the phenomena within it. I apologize if that was a little too dense for some. I just tried to abbreviate a 4 part bible study into a paragraph... But for an easy conclusion that can stick with you, remember this in regard to the levels of intellect, their order, and their relation:
Those who only know “what” what become workers, (Knowledge – one-time experiences) Those who know “how” will be their bosses, (Understanding – ever-increasing; gained) But the One who truly knows “why” will rule them all... (Wisdom – ever-increasing; given)
Whew, long tangent that I hope illuminates why it is SO important that the word, γινωσκω (the typical word for “know”) was used in verse 30 instead of, συνιημι (the typical word for “understand”).
Now that all the dots are on the page let's draw the connections remembering what the biblical significance of knowledge is i.e. the intellectual gain from under going experience. The specific series of “what's” that Philip went through are unique and specific only to him as a person. The order in which he was called, his life and choices before, all the way down to the number of hairs on his head are significant in some way to who he is as a person. Furthermore, these unique experiences and the knowledge gained from them has prepared Philip specifically to bear witness to this lost and fruitless eunuch who has put in so much effort as to travel internationally to receive of God and still is in wanting for BASIC intellect after visiting the place where the most intellectually primed and packed people are supposed to give light to his darkened condition. Philip was able to ask that question to the eunuch because, though it was apparent the eunuch had no inkling of what the words he was reading meant, how those words applied to him, and/or why the words exist and why he should pursue their meaning, Philip did. His walk with Jesus, recent evangelistic works and condition at that present time prepared him perfectly for that moment so that when he walked up to that soul struggling in the dark, he was ready and equipped to bear the Light of God that we are all supposed to shine as cities set on a hill.
That is significant.
More than significant, that ought to bring the true believer into a resolute state of perpetual and unquenchable joy!
Because that means that every tear you cried, all the pain you felt, the crucifixions of life that you obediently endured shaped you, and are shaping you, into some eunuch's Philip. That is to say, they all work together for the good of “those who LOVE the Lord” (that means they love the things He loves as they obey Him and walk to resemble Him). Inside of your pain is someone else's freedom from bondage; the wetness of your tears is the blessed relief that quenches the fires of affliction for another, the cross you hang on may be the only image of Christ someone will ever get to see, and God makes sure you go through the crucifixion to equip you with the nail scars that add validity to your claim.
This will require submission.
Contriteness of heart.
Death to self.
And the putting of self last that God and humanity may unite at the point of true, unconditional love.
These are precisely the Truths that the “first world” teaches against. Furthermore, that means the “church-goer” religion, that religion that has taken the name of true Christianity and deceptively married them to the teachings and ways of the world, serves as a chief stumbling block for the non-believer seeking Truth, for without these Truths the gospel is a nicely told story that does not hold together.
Think of the lyrics to one of my favorite worship songs, “For Your Glory,” and ask yourself are those lyrics really true for you? Would you cross the hottest desert to save a soul the world calls fruitless, but God calls pregnant with the first established order of the unified Body of Christ on earth? Would you climb the highest mountain to obey the voice of the Spirit you say you want to be with over anything in this world? What if God's glory, required daily crucifixions that require you to voluntarily climb on a cross and watch the world watch you die?... for them?... Read the lyrics and meditate:
For Your Glory
Lord if I Find favor in Your sight Lord please Hear my hearts cry I'm desperately waiting To be where You are I'll cross the hottest desert I'll travel near or far
For Your glory I will do anything Just to see You To behold You as my King For Your glory I will do anything Just to see you To behold You as my King
Lord if I Find favor in Your sight Lord please, Lord please (Lord please) Hear my hearts cry (hear my hearts cry) I'm desperately waiting (I'm desperately waiting) To be where You are (To be where You are) I'll cross the hottest desert (I'll cross the hottest desert) I'll travel near or far
For Your glory (for Your glory) I will do (I will do) anything (anything) Just to see You (just to see You) To behold You as my King (To behold You as my King) For Your glory (for Your glory) I will do anything (I will do anything) oh yeah I will Because I wanna see you (just to see You) To behold You as my King (to behold You as my King) For Your glory (I want it I want it) I will do anything (I will do anything, I will do anything to see you) Just to see You as Jehovah To behold You as my King
I wanna be where You are (I really wanna be there) I gotta be where You are I wanna be where You are I gotta be where You are I wanna be where You are Gotta be where You are (I wanna be there) I wanna be where You are Gotta be where You are
For Your glory I will do anything Just to see You To behold You as my King
I wanna be where You are Peace is where You are Joy is where You are And Love is who You are