Biblical Basis of Contemplation

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The biblical basis of contemplation rests on five related biblical truths:


1. God (including therefore Jesus) is real and transcendent. God is eternal, uncreated, infinite, eminent, and imminent. He chooses to reveal Himself to humans, and can therefore be experienced. He is, however, more than we can now comprehend, and we must wait until heaven to encompass His totality. He therefore transcends whatever it is we currently know about Him. Even though He has, in the realm of doctrine, already revealed all we need to know to properly understand Him; our personal transformation is aided as we add direct personal interaction with Him to our mental doctrinal understanding. See also Two Kinds of Knowledge.


2. God reveals Himself to humans inwardly. We get to know him by seeing Him with “the eyes of our heart”. He “makes His abode within us”, and manifests Himself only to “those that can see”. He does this by sending His Spirit into us. This is summed up in the phrase “the indwelling Spirit”.


3. God want us to seek Him. Those that seek Him find Him. Although He does initiate our knowledge of Him He asks that we further our relationship by seeking. Those that hunger are filled. Those that listen will hear. If we touch Him and He touches us we are healed. If we taste we will be transported in a wave of pleasure. If we thirst we will gain a river. If we receive Him He gives us the power to be His children. Jesus said these words (recorded in John 14:21-23): he who loves me will keep my commandments and I will manifest to that person and I and I and my father will come and make our home within this person.”


4. Suffering is ordained by God for our good. Unpleasant as this thought is, it is clearly biblical. God allows His children to suffer, not just as chastisement, but for advancement in the Kingdom. He allows times of darkness, dryness, confusion, disappointment, perplexity and desperation. He keeps us from despair and death, however, and works all things for our good in the final outcome of life. Times of suffering require stillness and listening as we wait on God for deliverance.


5. Direct and personal experiences with God will transform a person. When Job saw God with his own eyes he said “I had heard of you but now I see you, and repent in dust and ashes” Likewise the contemplative becomes humble and wise by seeing God and by seeing themselves in His light. Paul said (2 Co 3:18) that “Beholding Him as in a mirror we are transformed as we see Him in His glory by His spirit within us”. In fact, in the next world we “shall be like Him because we will see Him as He is”.  The contemplative experience brings a sense of awe, beauty, and worship. It goes beyond thought and brings spiritual transformation.