|The Objective of All Knowing|
|January 19, 2012|
God is revealing Himself in His Word and in His works.
A Calvinist who seeks God, does not for a moment think of limiting himself to theology and contemplation, leaving the other sciences, as of a lower character, in the hands of unbelievers; but on the contrary, looking upon it as his task to know God in all his works, he is conscious of having been called to fathom with all the energy of his intellect, things terrestial as well as things celestial...
- Abraham Kuyper, Lectures on Calvinism
"And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent."
- John 17:3
The end of all knowing is to know the Lord. Knowing the Lord is not simply a theological concept; it is an experience, a way of life that informs and shapes all we are, think, say, and do.
Since all of creation declares the glory of God (Ps. 19:1-4), and God has "hidden" the knowledge of Himself throughout His works (Prov. 25:2), it follows that any knowledge is incomplete until it comes full circle to God. Jesus Christ is the very embodiment of all wisdom and knowledge (Col. 2:3). We who know this must insist on making the most of it, showing the glory of Christ and the majesty and wisdom and wonder of God in all the works of His hands.
The work of science is thus as much a work of theology as the work of poring over Scripture to equip the saints for ministry. What would we think of a pastor or theologian who only drew from his study of the Scriptures bits of self-help advice, gems of moral encouragement, nice observations of a literary or grammatical nature, but who never connected his study of Scripture with the knowledge of God and Christ? We would say that the knowledge he has acquired and the knowledge he is teaching are both incomplete, because they do not come full circle to reveal and draw us into the One Who gave the Scriptures in the first place.
And what about those scientists, teachers, poets, and other traffickers in knowledge whose explorations, expositions, and explanations consistently fail to point our eyes to God, and to paint out some of the wonder of His majestic greatness? Are they any less delinquent in their duties than the theologian described above?
And what of those believers who have eternal life, but who seek the knowledge of God only in the pages of His Word, but who have no time or interest for reading and study in science, the arts, history, and the like? Can their knowledge of God be as full as the Lord intends?
Hardly. God is revealing Himself in His Word and in His works - all the works of creation and culture. Only the knowledge of God is eternal life, and only eternal life brings the perspective and power to enable human beings to live as they were created to live. We fail in our callings as dealers in knowledge unless we make ourselves bold and clear concerning how what we have come to know leads us to lift our eyes and hearts to the heavens, and to give thanks and praise the to Source of all knowledge.
Rob Zimmer challenges us to welcome all new discoveries of science in the year to come. But to welcome them, we must learn about them. As I argue at the website, Christians look to gain the knowledge of God fom every possible quarter. And we look to those who understand the various disciplines of science and the arts, and their significance as vehicles of revelation, to guide us through the data and research to the deeper level of the knowledge of God and His glory.
Would we know the Lord? Know Him truly? Then let us study to know Him completely, in all His works, as well as all His words.
T. M. Moore
Senior Theologian and Historian