Knowing the Living God and knowing about him are not the same. Knowing God is greater than the sum of all the biblical principles in the world. I can know all the principles but still not know the Lord, in the same way that I can have a ring of rocks and a pile of wood but not have a campfire. I need a spark. I need life. I need Jesus much more than I need to know about him.

Jesus said of the Father,

“You have never heard his voice nor seen his form, nor does his word dwell in you, for you do not believe the one he sent. You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life.” – John 5:37b-40 NIV

That must have stung a bit. He was speaking to people that had devoted their lives to the word, but couldn’t recognize the central figure in it.

We Christians like to ask each other, “You spending time in the word?” That is a good question, but I don’t believe it is as important as the question Jesus eludes to in John 5: “Does the word dwell in you?”

One indication that it the word dwells in me would be that I search for my spark, my life, in the person of Jesus, not solely in my understanding of the bible or its principles. The word helps me recognize the Living Word, Jesus.

This return to my first love over all the trappings of Christian life is what the song Falling Backwards is about.

July 11, 2013