In Paul’s letter to the Colossian Christians, he writes this concerning his desire for them: “that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” Colossians 2:2-3.
When I stopped to meditate on this passage I got to thinking what an amazing goal this is. I’m especially focusing on the phrase “and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding….” Paul’s desire for his people is that reach and discover all the riches of full understanding. How does this take place? I think it takes place on two fronts. The first is in the heart of the person and their desire to grow in their understanding and the second is in the instruction they receive in their local church.
When God saves a person He gives him or her the desire and motivation to grow. God’s seed is in him (1 John 3:9), and he has the Holy Spirit indwelling him. These changes that take place when a soul is regenerated are essentially the giving of spiritual life when there was none before and this life has the natural desire for spiritual food, just like a human infant has a desire for food (1 Peter 2:2). So it is appropriate for Paul to have this as a prayer request and vision for his people.
Second, it’s important for the individual Christian to be regularly attending a local gathering of believers where the Word of God is taught in all its fullness and power. Each one of us needs to have the Word of God opened and exposed to our understanding so that we begin to see the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God (Romans 11:33). The depth of God’s wisdom cannot be plumbed, nevertheless, Paul frequently prays that people would see the bounds of what is boundless and understand what is beyond understanding (see Ephesians 3:18 for example).
So for this desire and prayer of Paul to be realized, each of us must eagerly approach the Word with all of the spiritual discipline we can bring to bear and pastors must expound and explain the Scriptures in such a way that the people begin to fathom the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.