"the knowledge of our Lord and Savior"
2 Peter 3:18
I've been doing a word-study lately. Sometimes I get to thinking about a word, or a phrase, and I start to wonder about it. How is it used in Scripture? How often? Is it only used in one of the testaments, or both? Who says it? I love doing word-studies, although they can take awhile. You have to have a concordance ~ either in book form, or online ~ and go on a treasure hunt.
So the word-study I was doing was actually several different phrases. And they are as close as I can come to answering my wonderment: why does God do what He does? So I looked up tons of verses that all included words like "such and such happened..." or "God did thus and so..." and also have the words, "so that..." And what I found repeatedly was a phrase such as, "so that you will know" or "that they would know".
So, it appears that knowledge is very important to God. Whoulda thunk? Kidding. Scripture makes it obvious how God feels about knowledge. Take, for instance, Proverbs 1:7 ~ "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge." Or Psalm 119:66 ~ "Teach me knowledge and good judgement, for I trust Your commands." There are over 150 verses about knowledge. Here are a couple of gems from the Book of Proverbs: "For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding." (2:6) and "For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul." (2:10) Looks like we could do an interesting word-study on the word "knowledge," too!
But not today. Today's focus is "so that". And here's what we know so far: God wants us to know something. And time after time, in verse after verse, what He wants us to know is: Him. Notice these verses:
Exodus 6:7 ~ "that you may know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians"
Joel 2:27 ~ "then you shall know that I am in the midst of Israel; I am the Lord your God, and there is no other"
Isaiah 37:20 ~ "that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the Lord, You alone"
John 8:32 ~ "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free"
Ezekiel 20:20 ~ "that you may know that I am the Lord your God"
Over and over and over again. Judgement, so that we will know. Miracles, so that we will know. A covenant with His people, so that we would know. Trials, so that we would know. Deliverance, so that we would know.
That we would know His sovereignty.... that He is loving and merciful and just and powerful... but most of all, so that we would know: He is God.
~ "I am the Lord and there is no other;
apart from Me there is no God.
I will strengthen you,
though you have not acknowledged Me,
so that from the rising of the sun
to the place of its setting
people may know there is none besides Me.
I am the Lord, and there is no other." ~