Growing in Understanding

 “Our inability to pay close attention to God’s Word will unquestionably place us on a spiritually declining end, where we become prone to losing even what we already have in Christ” – Prosper Anang


“So pay attention to how you hear. To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given. But for those who are not listening, even what they think they understand will be taken away from them” Luke 8:18 [NLT]

Being born again opens us up to a world of unlimited supernatural understanding. John the Baptist tells us that the reason why it’s so is because being born again means being born of God; a spiritual experience which gives us a heavenly identity that’s completely different from our earthly identity.

What this means is that, through being born again, just like Jesus; we’re from above, and consequently, above all things. This is what John the Baptist’s remarked about Jesus, based on the revelation of the Holy Spirit, as recorded in John 3:31 [NLT].

What makes this understanding that comes with the New Birth supernatural is the fact that it’s from God. It’s the same kind of understanding that operated in Christ, because it stems from His mind. With it, even at twelve, He spoke and acted intelligently.

Speaking by the Holy Spirit, Paul buttresses this invaluable reality in his letter to the Corinthian Christians, when he said “For, who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Who knows enough to teach him? But we understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ” [1 Corinthians 2:16 NLT].

The thought of having more understanding given to us as stated in Luke 8:18, connotes “growing in our understanding”, and this is something that comes with our commitment to consistently paying attention to the Word of God, which constitutes the bedrock of our supernatural understanding.

You see, at the New Birth, we’re like new born babies, physically speaking; and like physically new born babies, in spite of the fact that we have the mind of Christ, endowed with unlimited supernatural understanding, our responsibility is to grow up spiritually in order to get to a point where we can start thinking like Christ in the light of His Written Word.

Jesus taught while on earth literally, that we can achieve this in two ways: first, by primarily paying attention to how we listen; and second, by paying attention to God’s Word [Luke 8:18].

Peaking by the Holy Spirit, Peter admonishes all Christian new born babies to obligatorily “crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment…” [1 Peter 2:2 NLT].

The King James rendition of 1 Peter 2:2 uses the word “desire”, which is from the Greek “epipotheō”, meaning “to intensely crave possession”.

The insinuation of this is that the scope of our supernatural understanding is defined by our intense crave to possess the Word. Our inability to pay close attention to God’s Word will unquestionably place us on a spiritually declining end, where we become prone to losing even what we already have in Christ.

To help us become conscious of our need of God’s Word in order to boost up our supernatural understanding, Peter shares the following Spirit-inspired thoughts with us: “So we have seen and proved that what the prophets said came true. You will do well to PAY CLOSE ATTENTION to everything they have written …” [2 Peter 1:19 TLB].

Why do think Peter would ask us not just to pay attention but CLOSE ATTENTION to God’s Word?

Here’s the answer: “For like lights shining into dark corners, their words [the prophets] help us to understanding many things that otherwise would be dark and difficult. But when you consider the wonderful truths of the prophets’ words, then the light will dawn in your souls and Christ the Morning Star will shine in your hearts”.

One Last Thing

A lack of growth in your spiritual understanding will be inimical to the dimensions of revelation truth you’ll receive from the Holy Spirit.

The point I want to make is that God wouldn’t reveal things to you beyond the scope of your understanding. If He does that, you’ll be confused instead of being elucidated.

This was actually the little difficulty Jesus had in communicating biblical truths to His then disciples. After being hindered severally by their lack of understanding, what Jesus said to these disciples is what I personally considered to be a cure for their lack of spiritual understanding: “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come” [John 16:12-13].

In spite of the fact that Jesus had much to share with His disciples, He was constrained by their lack of understanding. Paul had a similar experience with the Corinthian Christians to whom he said “And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ” [1 Corinthians 3:1].

 The experiences of Jesus and Paul leave us with this undying truth: “The scope of our spiritual understanding determines what God shows or tells us”.

Given the limitations that come along with a lack of understanding, Paul admonished the Corinthian Christians thus “Be not children in understanding” [1 Corinthians 14:20].

My Beloved, as I wrap up on this matter, I’d like to state that, a lack of intensification in your spiritual understanding will serve as a great limitation to your spiritual growth and maturity. That’s why you have to grow in your understanding; and the only way to do that is to embrace knowledge by consistently paying close attention to God’s immutable Word, while praying alongside the same way David and Paul prayed:

Psalm 119:18

Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law”. 

 Ephesians 1:17-18

17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: 

18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

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You’re deeply loved, highly favoured and greatly blessed because you’re a life-giving spirit just like Jesus.

Jesus Is Lord!