But, glory be to God! You don't strike back, you don't get even. We don't want to be fettered and impotent through ignorance or faithlessness. One of the best kept secrets of our faith is the blessedness and joy of cultivating a secret life with God. Conclusion. Perpetually reminds us of our duty, and leads to meditation on divine providence. But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glorification. 11For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the multitude of the sorrows which I had in my heart, Thy comforts have refreshed …Charles Kingsley—Out of the Deep, 'Good and upright is the Lord; therefore will He teach sinners in the way. I have been studying this Bible for more than thirty years, but I still often feel as though I have just opened the book and it is flashing its new insights, revelation, and knowledge into my mind which simply dazzle me and challenge me and make me pause in humility to give thanks to God for these marvelous, delivering truths. This was not unlike Plato's theory that maintained a higher truth existed. Conclusion. In Chapter 4, Verses 1 and 2, there is a beautiful statement describing what a Christian is: This is how one should regard us [Christians], as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. 8. We haven't learned a thing more than they about how to solve them. We don't want anyone else to influence us. Who is he who hath the happiest lot? 9. One of the greatest secrets scattered throughout the Scriptures is what you find referred to repeatedly as "the mystery of the kingdom of God" -- the secret government of earth, if you like. 3. Where has all our vaunted education -- the heights of human wisdom -- brought us, when we haven't been able to solve any of the basic problems? This is the secret of it. I take it that you’re familiar with the part I was given in God’s plan for including everybody. But how do you know the Bible is the Word of God?" The Daily Benefits Derived from It. xxv: 8-9. This is what puts hope back into our discouraged lives. From what has been said, upon the foregoing heads, it is …Samuel Clarke—A Discourse Concerning the Being and Attributes of God, Of Prayer --A Perpetual Exercise of Faith. 14The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. Why is this? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Help us, Father. That is the mystery of godliness -- the greatest secret the world has ever heard of! You will never be able to do anything effective about it. All our attempts after full obedience will be failures until we get access to His abiding fellowship. Prayer a most useful exercise. Life is not without meaning. Fast “in secret…and your Father who sees in secret will reward you” (v. 18). The core message of “The Secret” is that we are in control of our own destiny. Cloud's book, The Secret Things of God" however, sheds light on the real secret of the universe. The Lord hath heard the voice of my weeping: the Lord will receive my prayer.--Ps. They are secrets hidden from the general public, but available to those who are in the inner circle because they are willing to be taught by the Spirit. And we have a responsibility to our own generation to be stewards of the mysteries of God. But sometimes even Christians use that phraseology because we are falling heir to the philosophy of the world about us which tries to obscure the kingdom of God and act as though it isn't there. He wrote: Brief, powerless is man's life. 6:4 ). The Secret denies the ideas of a personal God (with thoughts, feelings, and emotions) and a sovereign God (omnipotent and omniscient, perfectly in control of everything). Its necessity and use. 1When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. Now, even Christians struggle a great deal in their lives. xxv: 8-9. He will show them his covenant. There is no reason why we should fail; God has made ample provision against failure; we must not expect to fail; but in case we do fail, provision has been made. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who possess the Spirit. Lord, teach us, then to be faithful stewards of the mysteries of God. He gently whispers, we lean in. The paths of the Lord? "The Holy Ghost whom God hath …John MacNeil—The Spirit-Filled Life, Lastly; they who Will Not, by the Arguments and Proofs Before Mentioned,be convinced of the truth and certainty of the Christian religion, and be persuaded to make it the rule and guide of all their actions, would not be convinced, (so far as to influence their practice and reform their lives,) by any other evidence whatsoever; no, not though one should rise on purpose from the dead to endeavour to convince them. Or we might invoke the authority of Jesus Christ -- and of course all final authority rests there. And I was with you in weakness and in much fear and trembling; and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and power, that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. God has a secret which, if you learn it, enables you to handle this mystery of lawlessness. There is a malevolent being called Satan, prince of a great kingdom of darkness and evil, a kingdom of millions of beings like himself who are in headlong stampede against the government of God, in revolt and rebellion against him, and who are intent on wrecking and smashing and mangling all the love-born plans of God for the human race. According to a Turkish official, a 1,500-year-old ancient leather-bound text, secretly hidden for 12 years, could be … 3. lxix. Therefore the final issue always is: "What authority do you have?" But "commit thy way unto the Lord, and He shall bring it to pass." His book provides solid, real solutions to life's real problems, in a way that brings positive results. They are constantly making mistakes -- terrible, ghastly, costly mistakes which injure and damage thousands and millions of people. Yet among the mature we do impart wisdom, although it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to pass away. Most certainly. Do you see God's iron-clad grasp of human events there as well? Do you see his ruling and overruling hand, his ability to control and manipulate, and to bring about his purposes through tears and darkness and sorrow? Do you know how to divest yourself of that sense of guilt and to step out, free, forgiven -- God's man or God's woman? …John Calvin—The Institutes of the Christian Religion, The Great TeacherTeaching was the great business of the life of Christ during the days of his public ministry. Some are using them as they are intended to be used -- as guidelines to prompt your own study. 5 Days. --PSALM xxv. How much we need to give ourselves to it, Lord. But, glory be to God! He has made ample provision for failure. And it is waiting for Christians to demonstrate -- so that when you get upset or anxious or attacked, you don't react as a non-Christian would. I am greatly concerned at how many Christians exposed to the truth of God are still unable to handle life as it is thrown at them. Man is to be the dwelling place of God. The ultimate demonstration is what takes place down in the hurly burly of life, right in the blood and the sweat and the tears of the marketplace and the home and the school and wherever we are. And they know how to do it! At last we must cry out with the apostle as we stand before the greatness of God and say, "Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! 6. But, as it is written,   "What no eye has seen,     nor ear heard,   nor the heart of man conceived,   what God has prepared for those who love him," God has revealed to us through the Spirit. The second law of thermodynamics, which insists upon decay and loss, will be reversed, and things will get better and better, and greater and greater, and richer and richer, and higher and higher to an infinity beyond our comprehension. We must obey some authority. Darby Bible Translation The secret of Jehovah is with them that fear him, that he may make known his covenant to them. I am brought into so great trouble and misery: that I go mourning all the day long.--Ps. Let this be thy prayer, "Show me Thy ways, O Lord; teach me Thy paths." Objection, that prayer seems useless, because God already knows our wants. It is amazing each year how people fall for that, never seem able to see through those who make promises, and change them with the wind, in order to get elected. But the approach I want to discuss this morning -- and what to me is the most remarkable and convincing evidence that the book I have in my hand is God's revelation of ultimate reality, of final truth -- is the fact that here in this book I find revealed about life certain truths which are essential to me, or to any person, in order to live life as it was intended to be lived, and which I cannot find anywhere else -- no other source gives them to me. Oh! Of these three petitions the central one is that for guidance. Finally, we stand before the mystery of God himself, this mighty Being, this wonderful God -- three persons, yet one God -- whose ways are different than our ways, greater and higher, who teaches us to lose life in order that we might gain it, that if we are going to live, we have to die, that if we are going to reign, we must become a servant of others, that if we are going to become rich, we must accept poverty and loss, who constantly rules with undeviating justice, and yet with warm, heartfelt, absolutely unending love. But "commit thy way unto the Lord, and He shall bring it to pass." God has not told us everything that He knows. He says that among the mature we speak or impart a hidden, secret wisdom, which none of the rulers of this age know anything about. I don't mean to condemn; God does not condemn. This secret coming supposedly could occur at any moment and will come without any advance warning to anyone. xxxviii. God has not only gone public with this secret, but he invites us and longs for us to know it. Significantly, it was to Paul, not Peter, that "the secret of the gospel" was first revealed. In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Christians are said to be stewards of the mysteries of God. And he is the Redeemer, of whom the prophet Isaiah was telling when he said--He …Richard Newton—The Life of Jesus Christ for the Young, Out of the Deep of Suffering and Sorrow. You must face these questions. Jesus described the kind of experience he wants us to know:Paul, from prison, shared his experience of the secret with all who would listen:The secret to contentment is very simple. There is no solving of harmful or hurtful relationships between human beings. He is behind creation. Read The Secret to Loving God Much (Luke 7:41-50) - Your Daily Bible Verse - August 14 from today's daily devotional. RayStedman.org/permissions. Perpetually reminds us of our duty, and leads to meditation on divine providence. This is what explains what happens to us in our lives. Does a “secret Bible” discovered in a Turkish smuggling sting contain the real truth about the identity of Jesus Christ? He has made ample provision for failure. How much can I impart it? Website © 2020 by Ray Stedman Ministries. Nature is what is produced, not what is producing. By keeping God’s commandments. “Shhh, I’m trying to listen.” The whisper of God is an invitation to the secret place. The most prolific cause of loss is disobedience--disobedience either to one of God's written commands, or to the inward promptings of His Holy Spirit. In the multitude of the sorrows which I had in my heart, Thy comforts have refreshed. He is governing human affairs. You accept that by blind faith. Even he who is strong to suffer somewhat for God. For what person knows a man's thoughts except the spirit of the man which is in him? Our focus today is on God’s hidden, or secret will, which is alluded to … Do you know how to handle it? It is these same things which later on in First Corinthians he refers to as the "mysteries" of God. I will say to the LORD, 'My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.'" Confirmation by example. for …John Ross Macduff—The Faithful Promiser, On the Contemplation of Human MiseryThou art miserable wheresoever thou art, and whithersoever thou turnest, unless thou turn thee to God. It is also called "the mystery of the gospel" (Ephesians 6:19), and in another place "the mystery of Christ and his church," Ephesians 3:4). ” ‘ Come near to Me, hear this: I have not spoken in secret from … Through us, Lord, heal the blight of humanity around us -- the curse and the darkness and the corruption and the despair which is so evident about us. That is what revolutionizes society. And it is some of these I want to bring before you. God is in control of history. A “mystery” in the New Testament is something that had at one time been hidden but is now revealed to God’s people. Joseph proved to be a trusting, faithful young man whom the Lord blessed, much to the dismay of his brothers. never follow thine own paths. (m) His counsel contained in his word, by which he declares that he is the protector of the faithful.Psalm 25:14 Parallel Commentaries, Safe Walking. It is said that James had knees that were worn down by his constant habit of kneeling. We know what a stewardess is, in this day of aviation. 8. It is found in intimate fellowship with God. There is no more encouraging secret in all the world than to understand this mystery of God's working in the future. You will constantly be merely treating the symptoms which keep reappearing all the time unless you begin to understand how to use weapons which will aim at the real source of trouble, as Paul tells us in the sixth chapter of Ephesians. The speaker in the book of Job was thinking of this Great Teacher when he asked--"Who teacheth like him?" xxxviii. We are caretakers, custodians, of God's secrets, dispensers of them -- not to keep them for ourselves, but to practice them and distribute them to a waiting world which is falling apart because it doesn't understand how to handle life the way it ought to be lived. 'Show me Thy ways, O Lord,' he asks in a previous verse; where he means by 'Thy ways,' not God's dealings with men, but men's conduct as prescribed by God. "Moreover, it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful," (1 Corinthians 4:2 KJV). Most certainly. It is God who produces nature. 9 However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no … Men deny the existence of this secret kingdom. Prayer defined. 13This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. 7 No, we speak of God's secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. But many are only coming and drinking it all in, but never going beyond that -- merely listening -- perhaps a few changes apparent here and there, but nothing very much. They are set before you constantly, so they won't be new and startling. Christ was the One who existed in the form of God yet emptied Himself, and in His incarnation, took the form of a slave, humbled Himself, and became obedient even unto the death of the cross. As Paul tells us, "This slight, momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison," (2 Corinthians 4:17 RSV). There are many foolish …Thomas A Kempis—Imitation of Christ, How to Make Use of Christ as the Life, when the Believer is So Sitten-Up in the Ways of God, that He Can do Nothing. 10. This book, the Old and New Testaments, is the revelation of the mind of God -- God speaking to man. There are many passages in Scripture which speak of that change, of what God is going to do in the future, what he is preparing us for. Who is he that hath everything according to his will? Here in Peninsula Bible Church, and among the Christian community around the world, the ultimate authority is the Scriptures. What a ministry God has committed to us! They have been preached here many times. Moreover it is required of stewards that they be found trustworthy [faithful to their task]. What a gloomy statement! As we take up some of the more important of them, we need to realize that I can touch upon them only briefly in the time available. 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