Pastor George Arant
Kenly Missionary Baptist Church
It’s so easy to seclude ourselves from the world of lost people. We step into the church building and study our Bibles and re- move ourselves from opportunities to love the lost. The point isn’t that we shouldn’t pursue learning, but we ought to be able to do both, to love people and know the Bible better.
John MacArthur wrote years ago, “Knowledge is essential, but it’s not sufficient.” Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 13:2, “And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowl- edge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.”
Some of you could be brilliant and worthless. You could be like a great basketball player that never misses a shot but always shoots at the other team’s basket. He’s a great shooter, but he’s kill- ing the team.
Why did God gift you the way that he did? It’s for us, not for you. We should constantly be thinking, How can I build up other people? Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 8:2, “If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know.” If you really knew, you would know better and you would use your knowledge to love. There is a danger in puffing yourself up and imagining yourself to be some brilliant person.
Paul then says, “But if anyone loves God, he is known by God” (1 Corinthians 8:3). It’s not just about information. When you love God, you don’t just know a lot of facts about him. You love him. There’s a relationship and he knows you.
One of my favorite verses is Galatians 4:9, “But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God…” It amazes me that Paul changes his expression like that. The creator of the universe knows me! I actually talk to God and he answers me!
Do you want to brag about something? Brag about the fact that God knows you. Don’t boast about how much you know. Boast about the fact that the God of the universe calls you by name.
Some of you have been studying Christ for years. But does your life look anything like his? Can you say like Paul, “Imitate me as I imitate Christ?” Do you look like Jesus? Do you love like Je- sus?
(The above is excerpted from a message from Francis Chan)