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Monday, March 17, 2014

God Knows More than Your Name

It is easy to feel alone when you are going through a tough time. Feeling alone often has nothing to do with being alone. You may be in a crowd and feel utterly alone. Many times that feeling of being alone has to do with the struggle we are going through. You look at others' lives and assume that you are the only one with your particular problem.

Going to church doesn't necessarily help either. Who really pours out his heart at church? Most church people are afraid to do so. They are afraid to admit they are struggling when everyone else is having a happy time. Thus, the only "approved" prayer requests are for sickness and death. These cannot be denied. They can be shared by everyone without any expected reprisals.

So, most people pray on their own without sharing what they are really struggling with. They wonder if God knows or even cares about their needs. The struggle continues and the alone feeling intensifies. You would be okay if you could only receive a word from Him.

So, here it is:

God knows exactly who you are and what you are going through. He knows everything that you have done and what you will do. He knew you before you were born.  You will never be able to get away from Him and He is not far from you right now. No matter how dark it ever gets; no matter how bad it ever gets; no matter how alone or hurt or desperate you ever get, He will never leave you. Never, Never, Never, Never!

He is the God who put your name in His book. He is the God who knitted you together in your mother's womb. Why would He do such marvelous things if He were going to forget you now? Why would He have formed you if He didn't have a solution or a provision for what you are going through? Why would He even let you go through your struggle if He didn't have a plan?

So, you are never alone. He is with you right now. He knows exactly what He has planned and is right now bringing it to pass. He will bring you through what you are going through regardless of how difficult or impossible you see it.

You are not a name on a list to Him. You are His child.

Psalm 139:1-16 (ESV)
1 O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
  2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.
  3 You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways.
  4 Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
  5 You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me.
  6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.
  7 Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence?
  8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
  9 If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
  10 even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.
  11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,”
  12 even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.
  13 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
  14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.
  15 My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
  16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

3 comments:

Anthony Chia said...

How to discuss this portion (Ps 139:1-16) of the Scripture? When we just put it out, without elaboration, for some, it surfaced for them a lot of unanswered questions; for some others, it drew out blanks, and still some, “It’s a David thing!”

A David’s thing?! It was David’s psalm, yet, when we know who David was said as, by God - as the man after His own heart, NOT just in the OT, but also (God allowed it to be repeated) in the NT, despite David’s life was marred by the episode of his triple violations of the 10 Commandments, we really cannot just brush it away as a “David’s thing”. The Bible is a book of truths, and NOT untruths, and so, what was allowed to be recorded in, believed to under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, cannot be that it was solely a personal thing, like a personal view or take that is contrary to truths of God or the Kingdom.

So, is it like, for David [only]? For one thing, he wrote it, and so, He believed it so! So, what are some of the beliefs expressed therein, that, to put it mildly, surface a lot of questions for people without answers!

One portion is this portion, vv13-16 –
--------------------------------------------------
13 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. 14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

So, no one is an accident? Or is it just David? Or is it just Christians or believers? Or is it everyone’s case? What about those who afterwards were born NOT so normal? What about those who never see the daylight, being aborted deliberately; and those who gone the way of “missed abortion”? I cannot profess to have the answers to all of these questions; I can only postulate a thing or two. Maybe it is best for me to express them as what I believe, in an effort to be brief, after all this is just the comment to the article.

I BELIEVE:

It is everyone’s case. It cannot be some are formed by God and some are NOT, and the text pointed to precision; we are formed precisely. But obviously, it is NOT all are the same, in every way, for example, you are a white, I am a brown! It is the intent of God we must bear in mind, for example, God intended you to be a white, and me, a brown; and He formed us precisely that, you a white, I, a brown. In other words, God does NOT make mistake or accidentally poured coffee on me, when forming me! When we say God formed us, it is NOT referring to, from conception to birth. It is before conception! Conception is in the physical; before the physical, there is the spiritual, i.e. we are conceived spiritually before physical conception. In other words, it is like in Genesis, “God intended it, and spoke it; it formed, in the physical”.

cont...

Anthony Chia said...

cont. from above

The problem is in the physical realm. The physical realm is a fallen realm; Satan caused it. The physical realm was and is no longer as precise; it is a “malfunctioning” realm. All these, what I called “subsequent developments”, like abnormalities, missed abortion, etc, etc, all of these, these set in from the physical realm reality. To me, the birth of the twin, Esau and Jacob, was a hint of what could go wrong from conception, in the physical realm. Does God know of these? Yes. Does God always stop or correct it, before we even see the daylight, so to speak? No. But God does NOT discard the being He formed, like we simply discard an outdated handphone! What He created is spirit being, and spirit being does NOT just die, like a physical body. A person may die physically, but the spirit being in him (his spirit) does NOT die, like it is no more. No matter how tenuous, the spirit-man is still having a “connection” back to the source, God, his maker; it is only when God ultimately “cuts” it off, that it can be completely severed, like eventually He throws people into the Hell fire.

So, it is God knows, and He still cares. I believe and tell people, God tweaks real-time. Even though one maybe marred from time to time, be it when he is still in the mother’s womb or at birth, or subsequently, God sees it all, and God still cares, and when you and I would work with Him, He would map a path for us. The metaphor of the Potter and Clay in Scripture, of how it was said that the Potter can reshape a marred potsherd, it pointed to this. Don’t live life blaming God, but instead get to know Him, embrace Him, identify with Him, and follow Him, and He will lead you on the path of righteousness where He will love you, and you loving Him back. The mortal or physical journey is but short, and it will pass; it is the thereafter, that is long, eternal, and that can be most beautiful or hell! Satan and his minions are our enemy NOT God. Be on God’s side, and fight the enemy. Jesus has come that we can be on God’s side, and work from that side.

There are a few parts or portions to this Ps 139; Ps Prentis put to us 2 parts, one is the one above, just discussed; the other is the portion, vv1-12:

Having acknowledged and acknowledging our Maker, God (vv1-12)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1 O Lord, you have searched me and known me! 2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. 3 You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. 4 Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether. 5 You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it. 7 Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? 8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! 9 If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, 10 even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. 11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” 12 even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.

cont...

Anthony Chia said...

cont. from above

When we have acknowledged God and continue to acknowledge Him, then the picture painted by David, as much as it was a reality for him, it too, is a reality for you and I. Those who followed my blog entries on my own site, would know that I wrote about how God knows the heart of men (Acts 1:24 KJV – God the knower of hearts), and for believers God knows us, through His Holy Spirit put to indwell us; through the Spirit’s interaction with our spirit-man. When we have acknowledged Him and continue to acknowledge Him, God knows us, in a personal way (this is called in the NT as ginosko-knowing [ginosko, a Greek word for knowing]), and you get to know (also ginosko-know) Him in a personal way, too. David knew God personally, NOT like I know my Prime Minister, for I only know ABOUT my Prime Minister, I do NOT know him. David experienced God in His life. It was like a Chinese saying, “God is like the worm in his stomach”, meaning God knows everything about him, to put it crudely, even when he wanted to fart, God knew! David said, basically nowhere could he go, that God could be there with him; even the darkest place was no problem for God to break in. But I must add, from David’s other psalms (like Ps 34), David has learned one place he would NOT go – the place of him doing evil. That is the only place, God can be with us, as in, present with us, but NOT with us, as in, He is NOT in agreement with us, in what we are doing. And so, if you and I learn to walk like David walked, the reality of David, is our reality.

How did David walk? A man after God’s own heart. A lover of God. David loved God, and so, he obeyed God, and so, he stayed righteous. Referring back to Ps Prentis’ title for the entry, what was David’s reality? God knew Him, and that was a ginosko-knew; that was knowing in a personal way. 1 Cor 8:3 – “Whoever loves God, is known by God.” So, love God; that is the biggest secret, I know, to the well-being of a believer. And now you know, too.

Anthony Chia, high.expressions