June 19, 2015
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
It sounds like an impossibility – Searching The Unsearchable! How can you search something that cannot be searched? Yet Paul writes this in Ephesians 3:7 through 12:
…I was made a minister [of the gospel] according to the gift of the
grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power. To
me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given,
that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of
Christ, and to make all people see what is the fellowship of the mys-
tery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God,
who created all things through Jesus Christ; to the intent that now
the manifold wisdom of God might be known by the church to the
principalities and powers in the heavenly places, according to the
eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord,
In whom we have boldness and access with confidence through the
faith in Him.
Paul tends to run on in his sentences, and the second sentence of this passage is 112 words, making it a bit hard to follow! But what he is saying is that God gave him (and others who have true faith in Jesus Christ) wisdom and enlightenment to delve into the unsearchable riches of Christ!
Why are such riches unsearchable? Because they are beyond human understanding! They are revealed by the Holy Spirit, and only true believers have the Holy Spirit living within them! Paul states in I Corinthians 2:9 (quoting Isaiah 64:4), 10 and 12:
As it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into
the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love
Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the
Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God….Now we have
received…the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things
that have been freely given to us by God.
It is a mystery, according to verse 9 or our featured scripture. A mystery is something that has been hidden in Old Testament times but is now revealed (see Ephesians 3:4, 5). This particular mystery is explained in Ephesians 3:6: “…that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel.” In other words, all people have equal standing before God in Jesus Christ the living Savior, by faith in His sacrifice on the Cross. Together, Jews and non-Jews, form the Church, the Body of Christ, the Temple that is the “…habitation of God in the Spirit.” (Ephesians 2:22).
You see, the Jews considered themselves the special people of God – and they were His chosen ones! (See Exodus 19:4; Deuteronomy 10:15). But in that Jewish exclusive view, the Gentiles (non-Jews) were something far less than the Jews themselves. Yes, the scriptures talk about all nations honoring the Lord and being blessed by Him (see Genesis 12:2, 3; Psalm 22:27; 67:2; 86:9; 117:1; Isaiah 2:2; 66:18, 19; Jeremiah 3:17; 4:2; Ezekiel 38:23; Micah 4:2, 3; Zechariah 2:11; 8:22, 23; Malachi 3;12). But Jewish rabbis and scribes had so corrupted any idea of the value of Gentiles that Peter, when he was sent by God to the Roman Centurion Cornelius (see Acts 10:1-22), he told him upon entering his house, “You know how unlawful it is for a Jewish man to keep company with or go to one of another nation.” Nowhere in the Old Testament scriptures is this a pronouncement given by God! It is that about which Jesus spoke in Mark 7:6 and 7: “This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.”
But in the establishment of the Church, Jews and Gentiles are one – equal before God – both lost sinners saved by His grace alone! (See Romans 11:32; Galatians 3:22). This was and is unintelligible (a mystery) to those unsaved, those without the Holy Spirit to interpret this mystery to them! And so, without God’s help, this concept is unsearchable!
But there is more about all this that makes it unsearchable! And we will examine it further on Monday.