When it comes to knowing God, according to this drawing (where God is pictured as an elephant), everyone is blind. Though they approach the same ‘elephant’ from different directions, each one of them discovers something distinct and personal to themselves. None of them gets the full picture—everyone has a bit of the truth. And so, as I was taught when I was young—that is what it is like with our search for God. None of us knows the truth, each of us have an aspect of it, and none of us can know the ‘whole’.
There are some problems with this idea! If this picture is indeed true—then someone, knows the truth and has been able to draw it! It appears, that someone in the world has sight. So much sight in fact that they can draw things exactly as they are and then explain them to the rest of us! Apparently, not everyone is blind!
Secondly, the people in the drawing do not have the slightest idea what they are exploring! After all, it’s not a spear, or a wall, or a rope—it is in fact an elephant. They are all wrong! Rather than having an aspect of the truth, they are coming to completely the wrong conclusions because they do not see enough to know what they are looking at.
When faced with the elephant picture about religions, we wouldn’t do too badly to go to the Bible to look what it has to say. Perhaps this book would confirm, or destroy the picture we are given about the elephant. Though you may not agree that the Bible is reliable, nevertheless, people have nowhere else to turn to for their understanding of Jesus! This purports to be the account of his life. And this is the book that guides all Christians in their trust. So what does Jesus have to say?
Jesus, in Matthew 11:25–30, talks about people knowing God. I want to draw your attention to two things he says. Not two things I ‘think’—nor two things that Christians believe—but two things Jesus says. Like it or not, it’s what he says that counts for all Christian belief.
He says firstly, that God has revealed things to children. God is not know by intellectual study, or by learned men investigating literature—knowing God happens as people listen to Jesus, spend time with him, and as they trust him. Children have little problem with trust—it’s ‘us adults’ who struggle with it. And also, little children have a real sense of their helplessness, where as us cleverer people think we can cope in life on our own! Jesus says, the knowledge of God is for those who trust Him, based on what he says. Some of us, rule ourselves out of that knowledge, because we are too proud to accept the words of someone else.
Secondly, he says that no-one knows the Son (himself—Jesus) except the Father. That is a stunning claim! He is saying that he has spent time with ‘his Dad’ and therefore his Dad knows him inside and out. No-one else has that sort of knowledge. But he continues, ‘no-one knows the Father except the Son’.
Jesus claims unique, and total understanding about God. He is not a blind guide, but the only sighted drawer of any picture about God. All others who attempt to draw God, or illustrate how he is known are actually blind scribbles, churning out ignorance!
But Jesus says he knows, and that also, those to whom He (Jesus), reveals the Father.