Humility: Response to the Gospel

by Bethany

Highlighted Text: Psalm 94:10-11
M’Cheyne Text: Ezekiel 42; Psalm 94

Knowledge: At some point, we reach the end of knowledge – even in science. At the 2010 TED Conference, David Eagleman argued, “When you get to the end of the pier of everything we know in science, we see that beyond it is all unchartered waters, all the stuff that we don’t know, the vast mysteries around us like dark matter and dark energy or … what the fabric of reality is or what life and death are about. These are all things that are beyond the end of the pier in science. What you really learn from life in science is the vastness of our ignorance” [1].

Understanding: The end of knowledge is not merely relevant to matters of science; it is also relevant to matters of faith. When the Psalmist saw the injustice around him and heard the wicked boast, “The Lord does not see; the God of Jacob does not perceive,” he responded, “Understand, O dullest of the people! … He who teaches man knowledge – the Lord – knows the thoughts of man, that they are but a breath … For the Lord will not forsake his people; he will not abandon his heritage; for justice will return to the righteous and all the upright in heart will follow it” [2].

Gospel: In the gospel, we see the depths of our ignorance and the vastness of the glory of God. When Jesus hung on the cross, his enemies mocked him: “He saved others; he cannot save himself” [3]. Yet they were at the end of knowledge. They did not understand that he chose to die to redeem his people. Even when the body of Jesus was laid in the tomb, his disciples mourned because they thought that their hopes and dreams were dead. Yet they, too, were at the end of knowledge. They did not understand that he died to be resurrected.

Prayer: Lord, As we consider our confusing and discouraging circumstances, we look upon the gospel and see how little we can know of your divine intentions and purposes. Our thoughts are but a breath. We admit with great humility that there is a vastness of knowledge beyond the pier of our understanding [4]. Therefore, we plead with you to increase our faith in you. Let us not judge you with feeble minds [5], but instead let us remember your promise – that you will not forsake your people or abandon your heritage. Amen.

(Optional) Post-Reflection Worship: God Moves in a Mysterious Way by William Cowper

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Footnotes

[1] David Eagleman. “TED Houston.” June 2010.  |  [2] Psalm 94:7-8, 10-11 ESV  |  [3] Matthew 27:42 ESV  |  [4] For more biblical reflection on the limits of our knowledge, see God’s answer to Job’s questioning (Job 38-41) and Job’s response to God’s answer (Job 42:1-6).  |  [5] Loosely taken from God Moves in a Mysterious Way by William Cowper (“Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, but trust Him for His grace; behind a frowning providence, He hides a smiling face.”)

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One Comment to “Humility: Response to the Gospel”

  1. Bethany, first of all thank you for your love for God’s word and steadfast commitment to writing this devotional series. I am always and refreshed and encouraged by the insight that the HolySpirit gives you. Secondly, I can so easily identify with the end of the pier of knowledge. Thank you for reminding me that there is vast wisdom, love and righteousness beyond what I can understand or see. I love the reference to Cowper’s work, one of my favorites. The Lord bless you and may His face shine upon you.

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