Can we understand God’s thoughts?

Many know that I am a staff writer for the website GotQuestions.org, and this morning I received a question that I wanted to share as well as the answer that I provided.  In our attempt to understand the mind of God, we must always remember that we are NOT His equal; and in everything God is the One who reveals things to us, not the other way around.  God bless you as you continue to study His Word!

Question: Hello, Basically my question is actually comprised of a series which essentially look to find purpose in Gods reasoning. Firstly, why would God create Adam and Eve if (Him being omniscient) he knew that they would sin. Secondly, why create Lucifer if he knew that he would rebel against him becoming Satan, and tempt Adam and Eve into sin. Thirdly, why place a forbidden tree in the garden that would be the mechanism by which Mans sin would occur. Fourthly, having looked for answers, on your website, the answer that I got basically claimed that everything which happened is happening and will happen, is such in order that Gods plan be made manifest, and that everything that happens occurs in order to proclaim Glory to God. Ultimately, tieing all these questions into one, why does Mans initial sinning and eventual salvation have to be the root by which Gods Glory is expressed. I know that there are some things that are meant to be known by man and that some things are meant to be only kn own by God, but I really would like a reasonable answer or something that comes close to it. I have read that the foolishness of God is wiser than the wisdom of men, but everything regarding that happened during the Fall, does not seem very logical.

Answer:  Thank you for writing to us.  Your question is one that has been asked by all believers, but you have almost given away the thought process to answering it in your final sentence.  You said, “but everything regarding that happened during the Fall, does not seem very logical.”; which in essence is the key to everything.

We (humans including you and I) cannot try to understand the mind of the Lord by using human logic or human reasoning.  This is where we try to put ourselves on the same level as God, which is not only sin (thinking we are God’s equals), but also means that we must understand the reasoning of our Creator just because we have a brain.  Two specific passages come to mind in this thought where God directly corrects mankind for thinking we are His equal:  The first is Isaiah 55:8, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.”; and the second is found in the book of Job, chapters 38-39, where Job questions God with the same approach and receives a complete rebuke (practically a smackdown) for doing so.

However, allow me to address the main question you have asked which ties all of this together.  You said, “Ultimately, tieing all these questions into one, why does Mans initial sinning and eventual salvation have to be the root by which Gods Glory is expressed.”

The expression of the Glory of God through all this is found in multiple instances throughout Scripture; with one focus: to reveal the Messiah, or the Son of God, who is Jesus Christ.  God was never caught off guard by man’s actions, nor was He caught surprised by our sin, nor was He shocked by Satan’s reaction/action in the Garden of Eden.  Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever”, which is a direct tie-into Genesis 1:26 says, “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over …”.  When God spoke these words in Genesis 1, He was talking to Jesus!!  He was not talking to the angels, nor was He talking to Himself, but to the very Son whom He would send to redeem His creation back to Himself.  This is why Paul writes in Romans 5:8, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

It was always God’s intention, by completely understanding the frailty and sin of man, to provide a way to redeem His creation back to Himself in the only way possible; through the shedding of a perfect sacrifice’s blood.  Throughout the Old Testament we see the importance of the blood sacrifice for the forgiving of sins; but the sacrifice that redeemed all of creation was the sinless, spotless offering, of Jesus Christ who said in John 15:13, “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends”; demonstrating that He will freely give His life so that we (if you read all of John 15) who are called His friends (that is, those who believe and accept Him as Savior), would be redeemed.

I pray that this helps you as you continue to study His Word and look to understand (as best as we can through the revelation of the Holy Spirit), that before we were ever thought of being born, Christ went to the cross for our sins.  God bless you!  ~ Rev TJ Conwell

 

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5 thoughts on “Can we understand God’s thoughts?

  1. [We (humans including you and I) cannot try to understand the mind of the Lord by using human logic or human reasoning. This is where we try to put ourselves on the same level as God, which is not only sin (thinking we are God’s equals), but also means that we must understand the reasoning of our Creator just because we have a brain.]

    Christianity is in shambles today because of thinking like this, which is all base on assumptions grounded in human consciousness instead of God consciousness. Is Jesus God? Well clearly it isn’t supposed to be us anymore but Jesus living in us. We are instructed to have the mind of Christ, yet we fail there; we are told to do the works of Jesus, we fail there too. We are told that as he is, so are we in this world, we cannot believe that. Why don’t we just make up our own bible and call it a day since we won’t believe God’s word. We are supposed to be a new creation, but we refer back to the old creation for any question as to what is possible for us. We are called to go to a place that we are so far from that we cannot even see it, yet we speak with such certainty as though we were already there. We have come to accept failure as the status quo, and draw the reference for all our reality from it. Nothing is possible with us when all things are supposed to be. We have the mind of God in Christ so we can understand God’s thinking. There’s no difference between the mind of Jesus and God’s mind. None of these contradictory thoughts of yours appear to be flowing out of the mind of Christ that you and I are supposed to have. We have been given the mind of Christ precisely so that we can know the things of God.
    The truth is an offense but it is not sin. When God says his thoughts are not our thoughts, he is talking to fallen man who has not got the mind of Christ. God couldn’t possibly saying that the thoughts of Christ which are in the mind of Christ, are not the thoughts of God.

    • Thanks for your comment. Christianity is not in shambles because of thinking like this, it is in shambles because of an assumption that we do not need God; that we can read half of a statement and jump to conclusions; and we when we are saved we feel entitled to some sort of honor that we did not earn nor have anything to do with. Not too mention, the overt desire to think our opinions are correct and thus we must publicly correct one another. While I appreciate your stance and ability to comment, you have to understand that by (attempting) to openly rebuke another simply by placing your own thoughts on a website vice any scripture to back it up is exactly what preceded Satan and his fall. Be careful not to deceive yourself; the devil is seeking to use attitudes exactly like this to destroy the Body of Christ. 1 Peter 5:8, “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” May God bless you as you continue to study His Word.

      Rev TJ Conwell

      • Hello Pastor Conwell,
        Thank you for the blessing you have directed to me with the excellent exhortation to study the word, which is well received. I wish for you a hundredfold return of such blessings on you, your congregation, and your house. I have not met you, but I can tell you one thing for sure…. I love you. As the pastor I assume that you are committed to feeding your congregation on all days, but tomorrow being Sunday a day when that demand is perhaps greater, you need to be focused. For that reason I certainly do not wish to be the source of distraction for you. My comment is not meant to be regarded a personal attack or derisive in any way. There is a fine line that good communication need to observe. If you pussy-foot around the issue too much you never get to the point; if you get to the point too quickly you risk offending. Perhaps I was a bit more anxious about expressing my view without the proper care of gendering offense. Regardless of whether you are pastor or least in the congregation it is not cool to diminish the value of anyone. I sincerely offer my apology to you and trust your forgiveness is not too much to hope for. Charity above all things is the clothing God expects us to wear; I will try to sport my Sunday best in that regard. Apart from whatever opinion we may observe I celebrate you in Christ, love is yet stronger, even stronger that death.

        Grace for Grace

        Newgen

      • I assure you my brother, there is nothing to forgive because we have been forgiven already at the Cross. Good communication, I believe, is at the heart of everything we do because we are to be an example always. Be blessed and let us stay focused on Him; and the rest of this shall be but a memory as we rejoice around the Throne one day! Blessings.

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