"My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge:"
The fault for the lack of victorious Christian living experienced by many a professing believer today lies at the door of their unwillingness to "grow in grace", and in the knowledge of or Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ," as referenced by II Peter 3:18. Please notice and understand that Peter exhorts the believer first of all, "to grow in grace," and secondarily; "in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." Whereas the believer is to simultaneously pursue these each one carries a distinct, yet harmonious benefit. It is the second exhortation of Peter to grow "in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" that is especially deficient among believers today.
God proclaims through his prophet and mouthpiece, Hosea that "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children." Obviously, these are not words of comfort, but rather condemnation, yet God cares without measure for His people in pronouncing this indictment and warning. The religion of Israel had become totally corrupt in Hosea's day; officially they served God but everywhere their worship was mixed up with idolatry and Baalism. In short, God's people were in a state of decay and were wasting away, because of their lack of knowledge of Him! The emphasis here is not on the acquisition of facts concerning God, but rather, on the appetite to personally know and desire the character of God in our daily lives, thus experiencing victorious Christian living.
Let me share with you a most vital and crucial truth regarding growing in your knowledge of Him. You must give yourself to reading! Read the word of God daily with a fervent appetite to know God, but also consistently read biographies and autobiographies of those who have gone on before us who came to a place of confrontation and crisis in their Christian life, but who also came to a place of consecration whereby they wholly gave themselves to the Lord and His cause. Without apology, I say get off the phone, the computer, tablet, and away from the television! Stimulate and develop an appetite for reading books of those who learned how to "walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called," (Eph 4:1). Years ago, I came across a classic book in a dusty, old attic entitled, Deeper Experiences of Famous Christians, and I read it avidly desiring to know God in a greater way in my personal life. That book helped to revolutionize my daily walk with God, and I presently look and search for any book of good repute to read, that will whet my appetite to know my Saviour in a greater and more intimate way.
The Apostle Paul, himself, called for "the books" while in prison and exhorted Timothy to "give attendance to reading," (II Tim 3:13 and I Tim 4:13). Paul charged Timothy to "Study to shew thyself approved unto God," and Peter exhorted believers to "add to your faith virtue" and virtue knowledge," (II Tim 2:15 and II Pet 1:5). Revelation 1:3 states, "Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand." Charles Spurgeon is quoted as saying, "The man who never reads will never be read: he who never quotes will never be quoted, and he who will not use the thoughts of other men's brains, proves he has no brains of his own."
In our walk with God, let us pursue the goal of the Apostle Paul wherein he states, "That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and fellowship of his sufferings being made conformable unto his death;" (Phil 3:10).
The Watchman's cry