The Mystery Revealed, Part 1

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling

With all wisdom and understanding, he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ.

Ephesians 1:

I love a good mystery. This is true ever since I was a boy, when I devoured every one of the Hardy Boys mystery stories. (And when I ran out of the Hardy Boys, I read most of the Nancy Drew books, even though these were supposed to be for girls.) These days, when I have a chance to do some fun reading, I'll inevitably turn to a mystery thriller by someone like Robert Ludlum or Lee Child.

The fun part of the mystery story is the secret, the unknown truth that will be revealed at the end, the "who done it" and why. Now, I confess that I love to try and figure out the mystery myself, analyzing the clues before I get to the end of the story. I get peculiar pleasure when I can solve the mystery all by myself.

But this won't work when it comes to the mystery of God. Ephesians 1:9 makes it clear that we know God's mystery, not because of our clever deductions, but because God has made it known to us. In fact, this verse adds that God enjoys revealing his own mystery to us. No guessing games here. Rather, we grasp the mystery of God only because of his revelation.

Verse 9 doesn't tell us yet what the mystery is. We have to wait until the next verse for this. But in verse 9, we are reminded of our dependence on divine revelation if we want to know the deep things of God. Yes, we can figure out quite a bit about God by using our minds and by considering the natural world. But this effort only takes us so far. If we want to know God, if we want to know his plans for the world and for our lives, if we want to know our purpose for living, then we need God to reveal himself and his mystery to us.

QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: How do you understand divine revelation? How much of your understanding of God comes from your own deductions and feelings? How much of your knowledge of God is built on what God has revealed in Christ and in Scripture?

PRAYER: Gracious God, though I love a good mystery story, I thank you for making yourself and your mystery known to me. How grateful I am that you did not leave me to my own devices. I would never have figured out your mystery on my own.

Help me, dear Lord, to take your revelation seriously, to base my thinking, my faith, and my living upon your self-revelation in Christ and in Scripture. When I begin to think I can figure you out on my own, bring me back to a right understanding of just how much I depend on you. Amen.

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