Is knowing God even possible? After all, He is infinite (unlimited) and we are finite (limited). How do you get to know an infinite God? I guess the same way you eat an elephant, one bite at a time!
In the book of Matthew, towards the end of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus says some profound things:
The Bible says: Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ (Matthew 7:21-23 ESV)
Why would Jesus say, "depart from me, you workers of lawlessness" to people who appear to have done great things for Him and His Kingdom? There is only one reason: He doesn't know them because they never invested time in a "relationship" with Him personally. Oh sure, they may have had a connection with some other earthly distraction (church, religion, mosque, synagogue, temple, meditation, spirituality, etc.), but not with Him and His Father.
In their book I Don't Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist, Norm Geisler and Frank Turek give an incredible example of this when they say (and I'm paraphrasing here):
Imagine one evening; you are sitting at home, working on a puzzle or playing a board-game with your family and you hear a knock at the door. You go to the front door, and you see a stranger. You open the door and ask, “How can I help you?” They proceed to try to come into your house as if they know you as if you are good friends. You say, “Hold on a minute, I do not know you, get out of my house, get off my property!” (Or something like that.)
Later that evening, you are still having a good time with your family, and you hear another knock at the door. You once again go to the front door, and you see your parents there who have come over to visit you and their grandbabies! How do you respond to them? You hug them, ask how they are doing, how they have been? Why the different responses? Quite frankly, you know them. You have a “relationship” with them. The other person you didn’t have a clue who they were, but mom and dad you have known well for the past however many years of your life.
Why would God be any different? Why would God let you into His house (Heaven) if you have spent little time or effort in getting to know Him? If you, being a flawed, sinful human being wouldn’t do this, what makes you think a perfect, holy, righteous being would?
Understand, there are three levels of "knowing." You can "know of" someone. For example, I know of Billy Graham I've seen him preach on TV, but I do not know him personally. I've never had a face-to-face conversation with him. If I went over to his house to spend the night, he’d probably send me packing.
Next, you can "know about" someone. For example, I've read some of Billy Graham's books where he talks about his family, especially the love of his life, Ruth. I may know a little bit more "about" Billy Graham. However, I still do not "know" him personally. I do not know what kind of ice cream he likes or even if he likes ice cream.
The only way to get to "know" someone is to invest the time it takes to do so. To “know” God, really know God, requires you to invest the time it takes to get to know Him.
Perspective #38: To “know” God, really know God, requires you to invest the time it takes to get to know Him.
Sure, because He is "all-knowing" God may know of you. He may even know about you. However, since you have invested very little time in getting to know Him, He doesn't know you personally. You never took the time to share your life with Him, involving Him in it. God is NEVER an intruder in our lives – He is only an invited guest.
Perspective #39: God is NEVER an intruder in our lives – He is only an invited guest. – Michael Franzese
Maybe you are like I was, blaming God for everything that goes wrong in your life rather than investing the time to get to know Him and seeing how much He loves you. As human beings, we have this horrible habit of judging God based on what we "think" He's doing, not who we know Him to be. I was a "professional" God blamer; I know all about this. Do you think this would be the case if you just invested some time to get to know Him personally?
Another question you need to ask yourself is, why would you want to spend eternity (forever and ever and ever amen) worshipping someone you spend very little time getting to know? Wouldn't this just irk you to no end? Having to "worship" someone you do not care for?
Without a relationship, there is NO WAY for you get to know Him! You may have a façade of a relationship with Him, but you have never really invested any time in getting to know Him personally. You are only interested in what you can get out of Him. You are looking to impress other people or to satisfy a spouse. Maybe you are just looking for fire insurance or how He is going to help you get what you want. Hoping that He's going to grade you on a curve, that your "good deeds" outweigh your "bad deeds," and because of that He HAS to let you in.
Let me give you this example I heard in Church recently from my pastor. Let’s say you are 51% good and 49% bad. That is, you are “mostly” good. Your “good” deeds out-weigh your “bad” deeds. You think you’ve been “good enough” so God should just accept you. I know this sounds good. However, let’s apply this logic to an Apple Pie. Would you eat an apple pie that was 51% good apple pie ingredients and 49% horse manure? If you wouldn’t do this, then why would you expect God to do this?
God will not let “dirty people” into His clean Kingdom. Through Jesus Christ, He cleans everyone who enters. Or more accurately, He cleans everyone who “chooses” to be cleaned.
If you are relying on God to let you into heaven since your good deeds outweigh your bad deeds, then you are in trouble of hearing Jesus say to you, "I never knew you." God forbid!!!