Religious experience with God is a personal and irrefutable encounter that a skeptic cannot dislodge from a believer. Some may argue that religious experience is subjective and there is no way to qualify such an experience. We answer, “God is Spirit and we worship Him in spirit and in truth.” We walk by faith. Faith is not tangible. We walk in love. Love cannot only be seen when it is given away. However, God exists whether people acknowledge His presence or not. Those who resist this argument are no more able to guarantee they will live to see another day. In fact they are in a very shaky circumstance because should they die, they will have to face the God they did not believe existed and be judged by Him. If a believer dies, that individual will see Him, in whom they have believed and will be able to rejoice.
Religious knowledge involves understanding God’s purpose for His creating mankind. The Word of God tells us, “to study to show ourselves approved unto God,” and to be able to rightly divide The Word of Truth. We have the “servant’s manual” to study (The Word of God) and to understand. We are not trying to be equal to God or to usurp ourselves through gaining knowledge. Rather we are seeking to understand His directions to be better servants and carry out His will-not our own.
Knowledge of God is rational and emotional. Through our personal revelation of God we sometimes get emotional. When we compare what God’s Word and how His Word worked in our personal circumstance, when nothing else could help us- we get emotional. God is personal. Our relationship with Him is personal. He is a Spirit-but He is Someone. He is Creator and His personality is evident and unmistakable. We see God in concrete acts in biblical accounts. How? We know his character; we see His hand through men He used to perform His will. We see God at work bringing forth His purpose in the past, in the present and in the future.
Israel is our unique indicator of God at work in the lives of mankind; we see Him in Israel’s past, the present and in the future. Israelites were scattered all over the globe but they became a nation again in 1948. Only God could do something like that. Logical knowledge would not have speculated on such an occurrence.
God’s Word is our guide for following and instructing us of even the daily news of humanity. The Word is knowledge. The Word goes with our personal experience with God-both are necessary. The Word is our spiritual news for the spirit filled, faith dependent believer.
Our decisions and choices in life are influenced by our religious knowledge gained through the conscious effort and active interface with The Word. The Word became “flesh and dwelt among us. God’s Word is propels us into acting upon it through His Holy Spirit. The disciples did so, and so must we. Some of them gave their lives for the sake of The Gospel. We can see this even in modern times. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who used his faith in God to propel a people to full citizenship was willing to die because his personal faith in God gave him blessed assurance of a good outcome. He had peace without seeing the actualization. God is able to interject His Word directly into the heart and flow of time. God’s nature is complex and we don’t understand it. He says, “We see through a glass darkly.”
Our human interpretation and understanding of religious experience and religious knowledge is flawed because everyone does not really want to see. Twisted words, twisted images and clever distortions are the way Satan perverts the truth. God is Truth. The Word keeps us from giving Satan the authority to pervert The Word that has fallen on “good ground.” This defense helps us not to energize and give life to the deception of Satan and his negative purposes for man. Remember Satan came to kill, steal and destroy man. The truth sets us free to flow in the wisdom of God.