…is no mystery to God.”
This was one of the last (and more memorable) spiritual life lessons my Mom taught me before going home to glory earlier this year. It was a few months before she passed and she was in one of her stints back at the hospital. I was headed out on the road on business and so wanted to stop by for a few minutes to check in on her. It happened to be right around the time the mystery was going on with the Malaysian aircraft that “disappeared” over Southeast Asia and could not be discovered. I remember her laying there in her bed as we were watching the coverage on the news and just saying very plainly in her classic and wise way, “What’s a mystery to man is no mystery to God.” We conversed for a few moments about that and a number of other things, I gave her a kiss and I was on my way. But little did she know she had just rocked my whole world by that one statement. It stayed with me the rest of that day. The rest of that week. And now has remained with me in the months it has been since she first said it.
It is so interesting because it is one of those things that we can know innately at an intellectual level, but when you have it put so plainly, it really makes you stop and ponder how deep and true the reality is. Scripture teaches us that “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein, for He has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers” (Psalms 24:1-2).
This lets us know that not only are there certain things that are a mystery to man, but they are a mystery to us because it is not our world to begin with – it’s His!
Old man Job was reminded of this first hand by God Himself when Job went too far in putting God on the witness stand, demanding answers from Him that Job soon learned God wasn’t obligated to have to answer –at least not in the way Job demanded. Here is just a little bit of the Lord’s response:
Job 38:1-6 (ESV)
Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said:
2 “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? 3 Dress for action[a] like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me.4 “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. 5 Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? 6 On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone, 7 when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
Wow. What a response! I don’t know about you, but the last person I would have wanted to be that day was Job. But if we are honest we have all been Job’s at some point in our lives, shaking our fist at God and demanding answers from Him as to why He has chosen to run things the way He has. But thankfully Job redeems himself in the end. Rather than lifting up his heart in pride, Job humbled himself before the Lord and gave what was the only appropriate response to such a revelation of the truth. Hear Job’s response:
Job 42:1-6 (ESV)
Then Job answered the Lord and said:
2 “I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted. 3 ‘Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?’ Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know. 4 ‘Hear, and I will speak; I will question you, and you make it known to me.’ 5 I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you; 6 therefore I despise myself, and repent[a] in dust and ashes.”
So friends, rather than us lifting up our hearts in pride toward Creator God when things are done in this life that we may not be able to quite make sense of, may we too humble ourselves as Job did and offer to our Lord the only proper response. That He knows things to wonderful for us to know. And let us find the promised rest and contentment there.
For after all…“What’s a mystery to man, is no mystery to God.”
Thanks, Mom. 🙂