Growing in the Knowledge of God
This first verse completely sets the stage for you to be able to receive knowledge from the Lord. This first verse is literally telling us that God is wanting us to grow in the knowledge of Him and His Son Jesus.
"... but GROW in the grace and KNOWLEDGE of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." (2 Peter 3:18)
This verse is only one short sentence long, but a lot is being said in it. After we get saved, God expects us to start growing in the knowledge that He wants to transmit to us. And the only way we can spiritually grow is by seeking after the knowledge that will cause this growth to occur in the first place! This right here is why a lot of Christians do not make much spiritual growth over the course of their lives after they initially get saved - because they are not seeking after the knowledge of God that will cause this growth to actually occur.
Fear of the Lord is the Beginning of Receiving Knowledge and Wisdom
Now that we know that God wants us to grow in the knowledge that He wants to give to us, these next two verses will tell us the first step that needs to be met before God will even begin to release His knowledge to you. These two verses are specifically telling us that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of being able to receive knowledge and wisdom from the Lord. Here are the two verses:
- "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction." (Proverbs 1:7)
- "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding." (Proverbs 9:10)
Notice that in both of these verses it says that fear of the Lord is the "beginning" of being able to receive knowledge from God. In other words - if you don't have a healthy fear of the Lord - then chances are, God is not going to be working with you very closely in releasing His knowledge to you. This first condition right here is another reason why many of God's people are not getting more knowledge, revelation and wisdom being transmitted to them.
What exactly is God meaning when He says we must have a "fear" of Him? He obviously does not want you to be so afraid of Him that you then become to afraid to approach Him for prayer and to enter into a healthy personal relationship with Him. What I believe God means by the phrase "fear of the Lord" is that we are to have an extremely reverent respect for Him and all of His ways!
Many Christians have a good healthy fear of God Himself, as they know that He is all powerful and that He is God Almighty Himself. But where many Christians are getting into trouble off of these two verses is that they do not have a healthy fear of all of God's ways. And one of God's ways for us is that we try and stay out of sin - especially some of them more serious type sins.
If you are out committing adultery behind your spouse's back, literally breaking one of God's ten commandments - then chances are, God will not be imparting much of His revelation and knowledge to you since you are living in an obvious sin. If you are out committing this type of sin against God, then you are not showing much of a fear of Him, or else you would never have considered falling into this type of sin in the first place. Your actions may be speaking louder than your words.
If you have a true, healthy fear of the Lord, then you will not want to tempt your fate and what He wants to do with your life by directly disobeying some of these obvious commandments such as adultery, cheating, scamming others, verbally and/or physically abusing your spouse or your children, holding extreme unforgiveness towards others, etc.
If you have a good healthy fear of the Lord, then you will make every effort to try and live your life right and stay out of the sins that you know will get you in trouble with Him. We are all sinners and none of us is perfect. I believe that there is a certain amount of "slack" with the Lord on our own imperfections and some of the stupid things that we will do in this life.
However, where some of us will get into trouble with the Lord on the above two verses is when we blatantly enter into what I call "unacceptable" sins and behavior. And some of the sins mentioned above are unacceptable in God's eyes for many of us, and they thus could cause God to pull back on you and what He wants to do with your life.
God will not be mocked! If you don't fear Him and His ways and the way He wants you to live this life - then He may just choose to withhold any knowledge and revelation that He may want to impart to you. That is why the above two verses are so important for those that would really like to start seeking after the knowledge of God for their lives.
God will be more than willing to open up His storehouse of knowledge for you in this life - but only if you are willing to do your part - and your first step is making sure that you have enough of a fear and reverent respect for Him in that you are willing to stay out of some of these unacceptable sins and behaviors.
About the Author
Article written by Michael Bradley of Bible Knowledge Ministries. Their website is a resource of Bible knowledge commentary and teaching.
The article was an excerpt from Michael's E-book titled, Seeking After the Knowledge of God