• By Rev. Joseph A. Bias

Love That Passes Knowledge

“…that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:17-19

Passes = bypasses, exceeds, surpasses, goes beyond, etc.

To know what is beyond knowing is like saying doing what can’t be done. Which is it? You can’t have it both ways. Or can you? Arguably, for us the concepts are not reconcilable with reasonable patterns of thought. Can’t means it is outside the realm of possibility. Can means just the opposite. The mind resists joining these two together. So, what do we do with the idea of knowing what cannot be known.

Perhaps the key is in the word “passes” (or beyond). Another way to understand this is to say, the human mind on its own is limited in its capacity to grasp the unknown. But, when joined with God’s ability to expand human understanding, then all things become possible. Remember the Word says, WITH God all things are possible.

“But Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.” Mark 10:27

In another place Jesus expressed it this way.

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” John 15:5

So the key to knowing what passes or is beyond knowing is to know with God’s Spirit expanding our capacity to understand and then revealing it to us. Remember this Word?

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:2

When Adam was created (male and female) he had full understanding with God, Nothing was withheld from Him in knowing all of creation, except one thing. His mind was capable of knowing all but good and evil. When he, through disobedience, became aware of the knowledge of good and evil he lost for all generations to come after him the ability to know all things. He became sinfully limited in his knowledge and understanding. In that moment he began to die and all nature because of him was marked with death.

Now Jesus has come to restore Adam (male and female) women and men, you and me to life again, by giving us the Holy Spirit and the Word by which we are called to renew our minds to the capacity Adam first enjoyed with God in the Garden of Eden before he disobeyed.

The renewed mind is now, through Jesus Christ, made capable of knowing what is beyond the knowing of the un-renewed mind. In Christ we can know what passes knowing.

The love of God is so amazing that we in our basic human nature can’t really grasp the full breadth, length, depth and height of it. What is God’s love for man that He would send His only begotten Son to suffer the cruelest, most vile and painful death for people who are full of sin and lost in their evil deeds and degradations, filthy and degenerate in their thoughts and actions. What love is this that would find such creatures worth paying such a price to redeem them from their self-imposed prisons of sin? This is the Love of God the Father.

What love is this that forgives again and again, that provides for those in need even without their gratitude or appreciation for His gifts? What love is this that is long-suffering, patient and kind to the least and the most vile of sinners? What love is this that is so humble and compassionate it reaches out to heal even when His own heart is broken in grief? What love is this that children and the aged embrace and find in Him comfort and peace? What love is this that through His blood and His death made a pathway to the Heart of God for everyone who will believe regardless of how far they have fallen in sin?

What love is this that looks beyond our fault and sees and provides for our needs? What love is this that will not leave us or forsake us, that lifts us up when we fall down, rescues us when we go astray, delivers us from evil, comforts us and sustains us in our grief, bears with us in our confusions and gently restores us when all has been lost?

What love is this that has given to us so great and precious promises, so extravagant expressions of His passion for us, that values us more highly than anything in all creation? This is the love of Christ —this and so much more than we can express.

We have known the love of God in part and we will know fully even as we are known beyond knowing.



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