True Sayings Series
The Key of Knowledge Part 1 of 3
By C. Eldon McNabb
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse." "I would that ye knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh;
"That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgment of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;
"In whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." (Col. 2:1,2; Col. 2:1-3)
Though not raised in a church oriented home, I became interested in going to church at about nine years of age. At first I attended a Baptist Sunday School near my home. The following Summer, when I was ten, one of my motherís sisters and her family came to visit us for about a month. With their prompting, I began to attend a Church of the Nazarene which was about a mile from our home.
It was a week or so after my Aunt Lieu and Uncle Audie Rodden had left that I felt the call of God on my heart. I went to that altar to pray and was wonderfully born again of the Spirit of God.
Immediately after my conversion I became an avid reader of the Holy Scriptures. Often, as other youngsters romped during recess at school, I would be sitting on the school steps reading the Bible. By the time I was in my teens I was aware that there was a treasure of wisdom and knowledge in the pages of the Bible which I was not able to ferret out.
I began to search through the writings of well known ministers for a clue as to how to study the Holy Scriptures and uncover the treasures which were hidden there, but to no avail. Inquiries which I made among the ministers of the Pentecostal organization with which I was in fellowship at the time were equally fruitless.
When I was about twenty years of age, I was made aware of a Bible which had a chain of references carefully worked into its margins, and with great expectations, I received as a gift from my parents for my 22nd birthday. Shortly thereafter, I realized that the system it used wasnít any more help than what I had previously tried. It was another disappointment, but God had seen the hunger of my heart and had heard my prayers, and He was ready to answer the cry of my heart.
I had heard Bishop Grady R. Kent preach and teach on occasion for approximately six years at that time. Now circumstances were to bring us together in such a way that I could really be blessed to share in the benefits of one of the greatest gifts with which God had entrusted Bishop Kent: the secret of understanding the mysteries of Godís word, "The Key of Knowledge." (Luke 11:52)
The Key of Knowledge is not something newly given at the dawning of the grace age as was being born of the Spirit and being baptized with the Holy Spirit. It had been entrusted to the chosen people of God from the days of Moses. However, their leaders had hidden it from the people at the time of the ministry of Jesus Christ. That is why Jesus said, "Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered."
It is apparent that modern times have not changed the picture as far as religious leaders are concerned. Almost without exception, anyone to whom God begins to reveal some truth is immediately set upon by their church leaders to discourage or even forbid such excursions into such "dangerous ideas."
In his second epistle to Timothy, Paul said, "This know also, that in the last days" there will be those who are "Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth." We see this condition existing today. Many, if not most, ministers today attend some school of religious learning. Unfortunately these schools have fallen into the error of using manís method of study and teaching. Their method is aptly called "the words of manís wisdom" and "the wisdom of this world. All we are learning, but not always the things which we ought to know about God and His work. What we really need is to become acquainted with the method which Paul revealed and promoted in his writings.
Yet they who have chosen the way of "the wisdom of this world" have analyzed and re-analyzed the Bible. They have written books. They have written commentaries. Some have even taken it upon themselves to write new "bibles." They have written new "Greek texts" and new "Greek dictionaries" to give the appearance of validity as they altered the meaning to suit their own ideas. In so doing, some have even brought upon themselves the curse in Rev. 22:19. I have often wondered for what reason God might inspire someone to write a new Greek text for the English speaking world, especially in the last one hundred and twenty years. I canít think of one. Yet, even now, there are men who are working at preparing new Greek texts, one of whom is a Britisher, whom I chanced to meet about a year ago while he was visiting this country.
But Paul said in 1 Cor. 2:6-13, "We speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought: But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory." "God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God." "Which things also we speak, not in the words which manís wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual."
The Key of Knowledge is not about the gospel of Jesus Christ as pertains to the born again experience and walking in the way of holiness. God made it clear in Isa. 35:8, that to walk in the way of holiness does not require any wisdom at all. He said "An highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of Holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein. No. It is about the "hidden wisdom." It is about the "Revelation of the Mystery" of which Paul spoke and "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to show unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass." (Rev. 1:1)
Next month, in part two of The Key of Knowledge, Pastor Eldon McNabb explains where this Key can be found in the scriptures, and how it Ė together with the Holy Ghost and the gifted apostles and prophets Ė can unlock the mysteries contained in Godís word.
This sermon is from the True Sayings Series. These sermons are available in booklet form, in their entirety, upon request. Please refer to contact information.