To Know and Be Known

“It would be better if they had never known the way to righteousness than to know it and then reject the command they were given to live a holy life.” (2 Peter 2:21 NLT)

To have knowledge of the Bible and/or the ways of God and to have a personal love relationship with God through faith in Jesus are two very different things. The verse above has reference to those who fall prey to false teachers who, in Peter’s words: “…will cleverly teach destructive heresies and even deny the Master who bought them.” 

What kinds of false teachings do they promote? Peter explains that “they promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption.” What kind of freedom do they teach? Essentially they teach that you can ignore the disciplines required to live a holy life. In short, they teach you can make a “profession of faith” then live any way you choose.

It’s not unlike many when they were young. They thought all their parents wanted to do was keep them from having fun. So when they finally got “free” from their parents what did they do? Whatever they wanted to do, right? Whatever that looked like – drink, smoke, cuss, steal, cheat, hurt others, have indiscriminate sex – whatever their little hearts desired.

When I was in high school I had a neighbor my age who was smart, talented, a good athlete – virtually everything you could hope to be. When we graduated we went to different colleges so we lost touch. Years passed and I was visiting my parents and I saw one of my friend’s parents and asked about him.

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With sadness they told me he’d gotten addicted to drugs and had basically “fried” his brain. He was living with his parents, so I asked if I could see him, but he didn’t even recognize me. His “freedom” had cost him his ability to function on his own.

That’s the way of Satan. He convinces us to believe lies, that lead us to make decisions that don’t free us, but instead imprison us to our own selfishness and sinfulness. That’s essentially what the false teachers in the first century were doing and what they’re still doing today.

Many today believe Satan’s lies that we can serve Christ, yet continue to enjoy sex outside of marriage, lose ourselves in the pursuit of money, in short, pursue the pleasures of this world with no fear of consequence. Of these people Peter said: “These people are as useless as dried-up springs or as mist blown away by the wind. They are doomed to blackest darkness.” 

Where am I going with all of this? To know Jesus and be known by Him opens the door to freedoms to be and do more than we could have ever imagined. The Bible tells us that we were made by God and for God, so, to the extent we experience the fullness of God’s presence actively working in and through us, to that extent we’ll enjoy the freedom to be everything we were created and designed to be. 

Nothing compares to having the security of being under our loving Father’s care, sensing His closeness, experiencing His love, mercy, kindness, and grace 24/7. To know Him and be known by Him gives a level of intimacy, the satisfaction of which is beyond anything this world could ever offer.

Blessings, Ed 

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