“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent." John 17:3
The scriptures tell us personal accounts of many individuals who have come to know God and, in turn, receive eternal life. These stories are given to us by God, because He instructed His servants to record them, for the purpose of inspiring us and showing us the path that we too must walk. It is in the doing that we gain salvation, because mere belief without action shows no faith. Jesus taught “Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Mathew 7:12 KJV). God reveals His will through the scriptures which are general principles for all mankind to follow. In addition, He also gives us specific instructions through His Holy Spirit that are uniquely personal to build our faith and lead us to know Him.
“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Hebrews 11:6 KJV). In this chapter Paul gives examples of people like Abel who showed faith by giving a more excellent sacrifice, Noah preparing an ark, Abraham traveling to a strange country in order to receive it as a land of promise, and Sara by having a child in her old age. All of the “great and noble” men and women of the scriptures had one thing in common: they truly were diligently seeking Him. They were individuals who sought the face of God. They wanted to know God and to do His will.
Seeking the Lord means to seek His presence. “Presence” is a common translation of the Hebrew word for face. So to come before his face is to be in his presence.
We are commanded by God to seek Him. As you acquaint yourself with the scriptures you will begin to trust that God does exist, that He will answer questions and that He is no respecter of persons. Once you begin the process of asking and getting answers from Him directly, you can follow through and receive from Him what He alone can provide to you. Salvation lies in “knowing the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom He has sent” (John 17:3 KJV). Draw near to Him and He will draw near to you:
“Now set your heart and your soul to seek the Lord you God…” (1 Chronicles 22:19, KJV)
“Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near.” (Isaiah 55:6, KJV)
“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13 KJV)
“…If thou seek him, he will be found of thee…” (1 Chronicles 28:9 KJV)
Moses is a great example of a man who came to know the Lord. “And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend…” (Exodus 33:11 KJV). This is intimate. This is really entering into the presence of the Lord. This is becoming a friend to Jesus Christ. This is a heavenly invitation to us all.
The writers of the New Testament knew Christ. They were taught by Him both before and after His death and resurrection. Jesus taught his disciples, “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him... If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him” (John 14:18-21, 23 KJV). This promise was intended to be taken literally.
The resurrected Lord appeared to a gathering of His disciples. “And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet. And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat? And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb” (Luke 24:36-42 KJV).
The Lord is willing and waiting to come to us, in the flesh. “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me” (Revelation 3:20 KJV). What is this door that we must open? “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers. This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them. Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine" (John 10:1-10; 14 KJV).
Jesus is the door we must enter through in order to come to Know God: “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6 KJV). His sheep know His voice because they have heard it and have been obedient to it. They have kept His commandments. Their faith has been tried and they have been found faithful. They no longer follow the voices of strangers, but live by every word that proceeds out the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4 KJV).
Christianity was never intended to be controlled by pastors, ministers, priests, bishops, apostles or even prophets. It is intended to be alive; for Christ to be directly involved with His followers. Historic Christianity has preached that God is unknowable, which has impeded the relationship between man and God. The truth is this: God wants to be known by His children. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him” (James 1:5 KJV).
Knowing Jesus Christ is the only way. “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:22-23 KJV). To be given eternal life, one qualifies by receiving a moment of mercy and grace that involves contact with the divine where true knowledge is transferred. One comes to know God.
Steps you can take on your path to knowing God:
Choose to believe that He exists.
See Him all around you in the world that He created.
Forsake your sins and come unto Him.
Begin to converse with Him through the veil, as one man speaks to another.
Obey His voice.
Keep His commandments.
Enter into His presence.
"In that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left" Isaiah 11:11