I sometimes reflect on the eternal realm, the place of His dwelling. In seeking to understand the concept of spiritual intimacy I think there is an important aspect to reflect on – the most important part of us is not from here! Think about it. When we surrendered our hearts and lives to Jesus He recreated our spirit in His image with His nature.
3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 4 Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” 5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” John 3:3-5 (NKJV)
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:1
23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever, 1 Peter 1:23 (NKJV)
The moment we surrendered our hearts to Jesus a transaction took place in the spiritual realm and Jesus life was released in our spirits. At the moment we received the capacity to interact with the eternal spiritual realm in a way we could not before being born again. Spiritual intimacy with the Father, Son and Spirit requires the development of this capacity. We can see or be aware of the kingdom of God, we then need to learn to enter and live in it (Jn. 3:3, 5).
In the context of dealing with suffering and persecution Peter, who knew Jesus well, exhorted us to encounter this eternal realm, to know Jesus.
18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen. 2 Peter 3:18 (NKJV)
A further context is that Peter opened this letter with a call to know Jesus in a deeper way and 3:18 is simply reinforcing that message.
3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, 4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. 2 Peter 1:3-4 (NKJV)
So, the way to be intimate with Jesus, is to experience Him, that is the meaning of the Greek word translated as ‘knowledge’ in verse 3. Knowledge not about Jesus but of Jesus, experiencing His presence. In my next post I will delve further into how we walk this path of knowing, experiencing Jesus, the Intimate One.