But that is not the way you learned Christ!— assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus,
(Ephesians 4:20-21 ESV)
The thought process of non-believers Paul wrote about in yesterday’s passage leads them to think with futility. On the other hand, the Christians in Ephesus did not come to know Christ through that process. Rather than hardening their hearts and ending up with misinformation, the Christians had humbled themselves (always the first step when starting a relationship with God) and therefore learned Christ.
Its very interesting that Paul did not say learn about Christ. When we know about someone we know some general facts regarding their existence. We know what they look like, maybe where they were born, and perhaps what they do for a living. But we do not know that person. Those of you who read my blog, for example, may know about me, but you don’t know me. There is no personal relationship between us.
God isn’t interested in having us just simply know about Jesus. We need to know Him personally. And to do that we cannot approach Him the way the non-believing Ephesians did (and non-believers do today). We cannot harden our hearts. We have to be open.
If any of us (for whatever reason) refuse to interact with a neighbor, family member, or co-worker we will never know them personally. We will likely come to erroneous conclusions about them because we don’t invite them into our life and get to know them. This is exactly what non-believers do with God. They come to erroneous conclusions – futile thoughts – because they have no relationship with Jesus.
The reason this is so important is the truth is in Jesus [John 14:6]. If we want the truth we cannot harden our hearts when it comes to Christ. We heave to hear about Him and allow ourselves to be taught in Him. Otherwise we will follow mistaken ideas that will lead to devastation.
As the Bible tells us – and modern psychology affirms – our thoughts lead to actions. If you are computer programmer you know the old adage: “garbage in, garbage out”. Its imperative to start with good information. Without it the results are useless.
Here in America we are rapidly removing all references to Jesus from society, thinking it will make us a better nation. Nothing could be further from the truth. The reality is – and we are already seeing it – life without Jesus leads to ignorance, alienation from God, futile thinking, and finally devastation.
Our culture demands truth. But in the ultimate act of hypocrisy, they reject the source of truth. To access that truth we need to invite Jesus into our life, spend time with Him, and learn Him.
Comments? Questions? I’d love to hear from you. Please feel free to contact me about this post.