Monday, August 17, 2009

What Angels Long to Know...

"Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!"
Psalm 34:8

Warning: I have no idea if this will make sense to anyone but me as I just sat down and started free-thinking about what I am learning in 1 Peter Chapter 1.

"Grace and peace be yours in abundance.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade–kept in heaven for you,
who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.
These have come so that your faith–of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire–may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy,
for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care,
trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow.
It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things."

Since I started reading 1 Peter, I can't seem to get this one verse out of my head.
"Even the angels long to look into these things" (v 12). What in the world could we know that the angels long to look into?
Well, the context is referring to salvation.. the coming of Jesus Christ to set us free from sins so that we could live forever with God in heaven...which the prophets wrote about hundreds of years earlier. Why do you think angels are so curious about this? Could it be that they long to know what it would be like to be a son or a daughter of God instead of a servant/ worshiper? Could it be that they long to know the power of grace and forgiveness? Or maybe they long to know what it would be like to be being made into the image of Jesus, the One they are in constant Worship of?
What I am just realizing through this is that we (Christians) have more access to understanding the mystery of Christ than the angels because of salvation! Because He is now living in us as Christians. Craaaaaaaazy Stuff. We have been revealed GREAT things-- God's plan of redemption, His plan for the Church, the mystery of the gospel, even things yet to come! The angels can only understand more of this glorious mystery through its manifestation by US, the Church, because they cannot share in what we have through redemption. They are ministers to the HEIRS OF SALVATION... US (so cool) and they are worshipers of God. Now, lets not feel sorry for the angels. From what we know about them, THEY ARE TOUGH and able to do exactly what God has made them to do but... "concerning salvation.." they long to look. They have never experienced the shift/conversion from sinner to child of God and all the beauty that comes with that.
If you have received Christ as your savior, then you can KNOW redemption but more importantly you WILL know the Redeemer. The Greek word for LONG means "to look into" or "to bend over so as to look deeply into and see the bottom of a thing". The angels eagerly desire to understand the depths of salvation and the mystery surrounding it.
I also bet God loves showing His glory and wisdom to the angels through His work inside His Church (the body of Christ...US-His followers!) God must desire the angels to look in on what He is doing in and through YOU and ME because it is so majestic and unthinkable! And because He is a proud parent.
I think God must love to show us off! I imagine Him telling the angels... "watch what I do through her now.. ok, watch what she is going to do now- simply out of love for me...". Oh, how He loves us and is so proud when we obey Him! Just like we love showing off our children!

No wonder the angels rejoice and are so excited when EACH sinner repents!! How fun it must be for them to watch us as He changes us and uses us!!
"In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents." Luke 15:10

But, WOW, to have His written Word revealing to us the glory of God through the face of Jesus Christ (2 Cor 4:6)at our disposal! Why aren't we longing to look into these things as the angels are? Longing as if to look so intently we are about to fall into it in order to see the bottom.

May we realize what we have been given and how precious it is. May we long to look into The Book that reveals the mystery that is collecting dust on our bed-side tables!

"His intent was that now, THROUGH THE CHURCH, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms,
according to his eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord."
Ephesians 3:10,11

"the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed TO THE SAINTS (aka Christians)." Col 1:26

As I thought more about this, I wondered (since this is also in the context of Peter teaching on suffering) if there is a connection here with the mystery of suffering. How God draws so close to those who are suffering and reveals Himself in a powerful way. Making those who suffer more and more like Christ through their suffering. Do the angels want to know what that type of intimacy is like with The One they worship? There is so much blessing to be found in suffering. Because of suffering, the glory of God is revealed in a greater way while we are here(to us and through us). I also believe, we will receive an extra measure of glory when we see Him face-to-face due to our suffering and our perseverance to remain faithful against all odds BECAUSE WE TRUST HIM.
"For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which SHALL BE REVEALED in us." Romans 8:18

"..but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with EXCEEDING JOY." 1 Peter 4:13

Be encouraged, dear one! Especially if you are suffering. It will all make beautiful sense when glory is revealed and you see Him face-to-face. And, He will reveal His glory to you and through you NOW! Draw near. The angels LONG to know what we can know. To experience Jesus the way we do. To know Him the way we can know Him.
And, wow, am I motivated to dig into the Word of God after realizing what we have been given!?!? We have the key to unlock the mysteries that have been hidden for ages.
The mystery of Christ and the understanding of the gospel...
(Romans 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved).
The understanding that we were all born into sin... needed a savior Who would live a perfect life and die in our place.
The understanding that comes from accepting Him as Lord and Savior, of knowing Him and being loved by Him, and of being made LIKE him in the process.
The understanding of grace and forgiveness (as much as our finite minds can take in).
The unfathomable understanding that He makes us Holy when we are desperately unholy.
The understanding of the fellowship we can have with Him during our suffering.

And, no matter how much we know or think we know about the greatness of God... We are no where close...
"Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; And His greatness is unsearchable"
Psalm 145:3

"Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!"
Romans 11:33

But, what we ARE ABLE to know makes the angels long for. I want to know as much as I can. I remember when I gave my life to Christ in college, I said...
"If I can know you, I WANT TO KNOW YOU, REALLY KNOW YOU." And He has been revealing Himself to me ever since but I am nowhere near where I should be.
One of my friends said, "Steph, the growth that happens during suffering is so precious. How we draw near to Him and He to us. I believe when we get to heaven and we realize the beauty in suffering... WE WILL HAVE WISHED WE HAD SUFFERED MORE".
I don't know about you but I resist suffering with all that I am... but should we if it means knowing Him more??
Oh, that we may know Him as much as possible!
"And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an UNDERSTANDING, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life." 1 John 5:20
If you don't know Him as your savior, I would encourage you that now is the time to fall on your knees and ask Him for His precious forgiveness and grace. Today is the day. He loves you so much.
"I tell you, NOW is the time of God's favor, NOW is the day of salvation." 2 Cor 6:2
I know what I am longing to look into.... MY TUMMY! I find out tomorrow the sex of this sweet one. I am really ok if it is another boy. Our house will be really fun and I am not sure it can be any more out of control than it already is. I trust God and I am so glad He makes that decision and I don't. He gives good and perfect gifts so I know He knows what is BEST for our family and has already made plans and purposes for this little one.
We have had a wild week. Construction workers are at our house from morning till night working on a game/media room upstairs and the boys' bunk room. We are finishing out the attic space. Once again, a construction worker fell through our attic. Remember, that is how Tim broke his arm in Jan-- by falling through the attic. It was funny because Bubba was sitting in time out when it happened and got to see the whole exciting thing. He thought is was very cool and couldn't stop telling Reece how cool 'time out' was when he was sitting there and the guy fell through and then the snow started pouring out. I am just glad no one got hurt this time. Here is a before picture for you....

Then, Tim had a pipe burst in his office and his dental office was under water Monday morning. NOT GOOD. BIG MESS. NOT GOOD. But, compared to other trials, this is a small one.
On a happier note, I got to have a girls night out and go shopping in Nashville last weekend with my 2 of my besties (non-bloggers... I am working on that). We had SO much fun.

This is exactly why I love them.

Will share my news with you soon!!!

Grace and Peace be yours in ABUNDANCE!
(that was my new fun signature I found in 1 Peter)

"Now to him who is able to establish you by my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the REVELATION OF THE MYSTERY hidden for long ages past, but now REVEALED and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all nations might believe and obey him- to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen" Romans 16:25-27


Jill said...

How lovely you are. How fun is it being in time out? I forgot my six year old in hers the other day, about 45 minutes later she hollered. Oops. I am loving the attic fun. Waiting for the good news...say some $ for a camping trip..hint hint.

Angela said...

Loved this post! Love your heart. AND CAN'T WAIT TO FIND OUT THE NEWS!!!