Spiritual Warfare #9 ~ Tests and Trials

Many years ago, while asking the Lord some questions about the fall of man and His ability to see the future. He spoke to me and said: “It was never my intention for man to live with two natures.” After He said that, I had many more questions about His foreknowledge. “Not your intention Lord? How does that work if You know the end from the beginning? Are You saying that You were surprised at Adam’s sin?” I wasn’t questioning the truth of what God said, just seeking understanding.

This is something the Lord has been revealing to me over several years. It took some time to pentrate the strongholds of wrong teaching and wrong believing. This will be hard to swallow for some, but for those that have ears to hear, this revelation will give a deeper understanding of spiritual warfare and His great love for us. It will strengthen us when the battle gets really tough.

While reading Proverbs 25 the Lord began to confirm some things that He was showing me about how He uses His foreknowledge.

Proverbs 25:2-3 It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out. As the heavens for height, and the earth for depth, so the heart of kings is unsearchable.

            I pondered that statement, “We are kings and priests unto our God.” (Rev. 1:6) I began to meditate on the fact that God has made our hearts unsearchable by men. Then I said out loud, “Our hearts are unsearchable by everyone but you Lord.”

            He then spoke to me, “No Jack, I have purposely made your heart unsearchable by everyone, even Me.” I said, “Lord show me what you mean by this, I do not understand. I remember scripture that says you search the hearts and minds of men.” (Jer.17:10)

            The Lord then revealed this to me, (I will paraphrase because I can’t remember the exact words.) “I have made you a sovereign being with a free will. When you choose Me and accept the sacrifice of My Son, I lay aside much of My foreknowledge in favor of the mystery of relationship with you. The moment you make Christ Lord, I create a mysterious new creature, born of my Spirit.

I have given you my written Word, my spoken Word, and my living Word to help you pursue the mystery of who I Am. I would never ask you to do anything that I have not done, or am not willing to do. Your heart is revealed to Me as you pursue Me. The only way I can know your heart is if you reveal it to me through your words and your actions. This is why faith pleases me. It demonstrates your love for me.

I love a mystery, especially the mystery of my children. It is My glory to conceal man’s heart and my glory to search it out. I do this for my good pleasure.”

            God was showing me that He does not always use His foreknowledge, at least not all the time. He will choose relationship over His ability to see the future.

He loves the spontaneity, the anticipation, the surprises of growing in intimacy with His children. Understanding of His love will be multiplied because of this simple revelation.

            Our heart is a mystery even to God Himself. He makes it this way for His good pleasure. This may be the most profound thing I have discovered about His nature and His love.

To better understand the mysteries of God’s word, we must understand that God loves a mystery.

If we think about the implications of this, we see that we have the ability to surprise God. That is an amazing thought! While thinking about this He spoke to me again.

“I gave you creativity so I could be surprised at how you love Me with it.”

We are so glorious and so precious in His sight that we have not begun to understand how much He desires relationship with us. He eagerly awaits the revealing our hearts to Him.

Here are some of the many passages that support this truth:

Genesis 3:8-13 And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?” 10 So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.” 11 And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?” 12 Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.” 13 And the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”

Here we see God asking four questions of Adam and Eve. I have heard it preached many times, “when God asks a question He is not looking for information.” I have also heard, “God was asking questions for Adam’s sake, not His own.” This kind of thinking is based on our limited understanding of His omniscience and the assumption that He always uses His foreknowledge.

The argument over predestination versus free will doctrine is easily answered; It is both.

Genesis 22:1-2 Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”

Why does God test if He knows the answers to the test? lets read the rest.

Genesis 22:9-12 Then they came to the place of which God had told him. And Abraham built an altar there and placed the wood in order; and he bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. 10 And Abraham stretched out his hand and took the knife to slay his son.11 But the Angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” So he said, “Here I am.” 12 And He said, “Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.”

The most significant act of faith recorded by a fallen man. Notice the language in verse 12, “Now I know…” God was wanting to see if Abraham would withhold his son from Him. Abraham passed the test! If a fallen man had not passed this test, God would not have had a legal right to send His son as a sacrifice for all mankind.

Deuteronomy 8:2 And you shall remember that the Lord your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not.

Did God already know what was in their hearts, or was He hoping for them to turn to Him, believe Him, reveal their love for Him?

James 1:12  Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

The words temptation, trials, trying, and fiery trial are all language for testing in the New Testament. It is always our faith in Him that He is testing.

1 Peter 4:12 Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you;

James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

It is always our faith that is being tested. God wants to see if we really believe Him, if we will follow Him, and if we really love Him. He lays aside His foreknowledge and searches our hearts to find the treasure of a living faith. Faith without works is a dead faith. It is only by the actions of our faith that our heart is revealed.

Exodus 20:20 And Moses said to the people, “Do not fear; for God has come to test you, and that His fear may be before you, so that you may not sin.”

Consider this, if God can choose to remember our sins no more, (Hebrews 8:12) He can certainly lay aside His ability to see the future if He so chooses.

He that has ears to hear, let him hear. Amen.

It is our journey but it is His work, and it is a marvelous mystery! Lord give us understanding in these things. Amen!

For more lessons on Spiritual Warfare CLICK HERE.

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One response to “Spiritual Warfare #9 ~ Tests and Trials

  1. Anonymous