Eternal Savior Lutheran Church

A member of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

2688 North Park Drive
Lafayette, CO 80026
303-665-6105
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October 16 – Searching Things Out

“These also are proverbs of Solomon which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied. 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.” Proverbs 25:1-3

Devotional Thought For The Day

One can read the commentaries for various thoughts as to which “men of Hezekiah” may have been involved in the compilation and publication of these proverbs.  More than likely the prominent prophets of that day were instrumental – Isaiah, Hosea, and Micah.  It is heartening to see that earthly kings like Hezekiah and Solomon were deeply involved in studying the Scriptures “to search things out.”  This is an example that all earthly rulers should follow – and all of us who have such kingly leisure and ability.  Nothing would bring about greater wisdom, health, and blessedness than having leaders who were avid students of God’s Word, Holy Scripture.  Our studies should not be superficial, simply observing interesting facts about antiquity; the Scriptures, while thoroughly historical, are about the deepest, most basic and existential issues of human being.  We need their light to shine into our own hearts and souls.

The second verse, however, considers one of the mysterious aspects of God’s revelation of Himself through His Word, the Bible.  It seems paradoxical that in “revealing” Himself, God also “hides” Himself, and that there is much that we might like to know about God, His will, His purpose and plans, that He chooses not to reveal to us.  This same reality is revealed to us in other Scriptures, like Isaiah 45:15:  “Truly, you are a God who hides Himself, O God of Israel, the Savior.”  Martin Luther worked a great deal with this mysterious doctrine, often referred to as the “Deus absconditus,” the hidden, or unrevealed aspects of God.  Put simply, what is crucial and indispensable God has revealed to us in Holy Scripture; what is beyond our ability to grasp, or what would be distracting and perhaps even dangerous for us to know is kept hidden from us.

What we need to know has been provided for us, all that our greatest blessedness requires.  The apostle Paul had it right, and no higher wisdom can be urged upon us:  “But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” [2 Tim. 3:14-17]  Want true faith and salvation?  God has supplied it in Holy Scripture.  Want to be equipped for every good work?  God has supplied it in Holy Scripture.  Want more?  Beware of prying into the “Deus absconditus” if you haven’t completely mastered what IS in Holy Scripture [which is impossible for human beings to master]!  What has been written is exactly what God wants us to know and to occupy and exercise ourselves with!  Anyone who wants more is foolish, and wanders into dangerous darkness and evil.

Even the earthly wisdom of kings and rulers remains “unsearchable” and inscrutable.  Perhaps it is a bit Machiavellian, but those in authority have to keep some things to themselves – “loose lips sink ships.”  Thankfully, God appoints and controls the reign of earthly rulers and will hold them accountable – it is not our duty to “know” everything about governmental affairs.  We honor this proverb if we remember this:  “It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out.”  Our glory, as we have time and opportunity, is to “abide” in Christ’s Word, to continue in studying the Scriptures, and to receive from God the blessings He seeks to bestow upon us through His Word.  This is not only our privilege and honor, it is also our “glory.”

Prayer For The Day

Dear Lord Jesus Christ, thanks and praise be to You for all that You have revealed to us in Holy Scripture – that we too have come to know of Your love and Your free gift of salvation, and have come to faith and trust in You.  Thank You also for giving us Your Word which is able to equip us for every good work.  Grant us wisdom to earnestly study Your Word and to leave the unrevealed things to You. Bless those in authority with the same wisdom of Your Word.  Amen.