First-Hand Knowledge of God is Far Better than Hearsay

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Picture of a boy amazed by first-hand knowledge of God from the Bible

In today’s Bible reading* we see the final word from God and Job. God’s statements involve two mighty creatures, Behemoth (a hippopotamus?) and Leviathan (a fire-breathing dragon-like sea creature that must have become extinct since Job’s story was written). Although both of these are creatures, God reminds Job that he can’t even get his own head wrapped around them and have any authority over them, much less get his head wrapped around or control God Himself.

It’s so important to note two statements from Job: 1) “I know that you can do anything and no plan of yours can be thwarted.” (Job 42:2 CSB) and 2) “I had heard reports about you, but now my eyes have seen you. Therefore, I reject my words and am sorry for them; I am dust and ashes.” Job 42:5–6 (CSB)

When confronted by God, Job realized that there is a God that he had heard of, and there is the God Who Is. Having gained a first-hand knowledge of God, Job repents of every wrong thing he had said about God out of his ignorance. Job realized that God’s purposes will stand and nothing can subvert God’s plans.


I read a lot. A. Lot. Several years ago, God challenged me to spend the next thirty days only reading my Bible. As a Bible-study teacher with scores of commentaries, study guides, original-language lexicons and word studies, and several study Bibles, I found it difficult — but very refreshing — to only use my Bible to prepare the Bible studies I was teaching at the local church I attended. I had become dependent on second-hand and third-hand knowledge of the Bible and God. Quite frankly, I was eating the regurgitated Word of God. I needed God’s reminder that I needed to experience Him in His Word for myself and not just be exposed to Him from other people’s experience of Him.

Let me challenge you to only spend time in God’s Word through the entire month of February (except for my devotionals, of course!) Ask God to speak to your heart from His Word. Ask God to give you first-hand knowledge of Him as you read your Bible.

As you encounter Him in His Word — first-hand — share with your family, your friends, and your church members what God is showing you and encourage them to have first-hand encounters with the God of the Word, too.

* Chapters covered in today’s reading:
– Job 40:6
– Job 41
– Job 42
– Psalm 29

This devotional was originally published on February 2, 2021.

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