Knowledge – BT2
Epignosis, epiginosko, and ginosko is experiential, relational, eido ‘seeing’ knowledge
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The words epignosis (noun) or epiginosko (verb), and to a lesser degree ginosko, are very important words describing an intimate fellowship type of knowledge in the NT, precisely because the Jewish scribes/scholars and Pharisee teachers were experts at gnosis info-knowledge about God as well as the Greek philosophers and Gnostics who prided themselves in such “insider ‘secret’ information.” But Paul recognized that “this gnosis knowledge puffs (a) up” (b). Also, Jesus accused the bible experts of His day: “You painstakingly search the scriptures because you suppose that in them you may take hold of zoe genuine-life everlasting, but it is they that bear witness of Me, yet you refuse to come to Me that you may take hold of zoe genuine-life.” They may have lots of gnosis info-knowledge, even reciting from memory what was on any page of their bible! However, they didn’t have prophetic eido visionary knowledge: “Is this not the reason you are wrong, because you absolutely in fact eido mentally ‘see’ to perceive/know neither the scriptures nor the enabling-power of God?” (c). <Notes> a) swells the head to conceit, b) 1 Corinthians 8:1, c) Mark 12:24, Matthew 22:29.
They intellectually knew all about the unconditional-love of God, but Jesus still could say: “But I experientially, relationally ginosko know that you absolutely do not in fact have The Unconditional-Love of God within you” (a). For Jesus stated to His disciples: “This is zoe genuine-life everlasting: that they experientially, relationally ginosko know You, the only true God, and/coupled Jesus Christ who you sent” (b). Bible study it is not the way to genuinely know God, even though the Jews taught this as do many Christians, but through the eido ‘seeing’ knowledge of the completely different-in-kind New Covenant (c). <Notes> a) John 5:42, b) John 17:3, c) Jeremiah 31:34.
Those who teach that bible study is “the way” actually don’t even know what the bible says about this subject, and thus they are merely teaching “traditions of men.” I’ve studied everything the bible says about this for years and it’s very clear that the prophetic, directly-spoken/heard prophetic rhema word via eido vision is “the way” to ginosko, epiginosko, and epignosis knowledge, and this is is what was intended under the New Covenant to actually know God. Christian musicians need to understand this if they are going to learn effectively from God or lead others to this through their music.
The scribes, philosophers, debaters, and Gnostics with all their gnosis info-knowledge, sophia wisdom, and sunesis connect-the-dots inductive understanding didn’t even come close to genuinely knowing God, because their knowledge was not experientially, relationally ginosko knowing and thus it could not be considered genuine epiginosko/epignosis knowledge. That’s exactly why the NT writers use these terms to distinquish the completely different-in-kind New Covenant way! Paul agrees with Isaiah who both agree with God, saying: “For it is written (b), ‘I will apollumi absolutely, permanently destroy the sophia wisdom of the wise ones, and sunesis connect-the-dots inductive understanding of the understanding ones I will reject as invalid (a).’ Where is the one who is sophia wise? Where is the scribe (bible-experts)? Where is the debater (Greek philosophers and Jew) of this age? Has not God made foolish the sophia wisdom of the world” (c)? <Notes> a) atheteo: disrespect, despise, reject as invalid, disregard as spurious, b) Isaiah 29:14, c) 1 Corinthians 1:19-20.
Jesus said it best, “the flesh absolutely in fact actually, ongoingly profits (a) nothing” (b), and in context Jesus was talking about the Jewish religion! Zechariah 4:6’s “might and power” approach is totally worthless to God! Worldly sunesis understanding can only connect dots of data next or near each other (sequitur) to inductively reason a conclusion. Then they apply their gnosis information and sunesis rationale to a particular situation and they call that wisdom! How limited and how foolish because they base their confidence on their own limitations! What frustrates the heck out of the world’s “understanding ones” is when God through the revelation of the Spirit ‘connects dots’ of information very far apart (non-sequitur) to give His own sunesis understanding to His servants, even little children or other uneducated “least among them.” <Notes> a) is useful or advantageous for, b) John 6:63.
God can and does “out of thin air” reveal exactly the information He has hidden within Himself and gives it “free of charge” to US just in that very moment for that very situation. But when He does this for me, I just stand back in awe and praise Him! The same is true for playing music! There are so many brilliant, talented musicians, even Christians ones, but if it is only based on the world’s sophia wisdom, sunesis logic, and gnosis knowledge, then God completely rejects it as spurious and good for nothing. So why are Christian musicians resorting to it, in many cases no differently than worldly men, and justifying it because they are now doing it for God? This is the definition of religion!
Just how genuine is this verb epiginosko that we should desire this? As genuinely “the real thing” as Christ’s knowledge of us, for we will have this same knowledge of Christ and His kingdom when He returns and changes us into His likeness in a twinkling of an eye (a). As genuinely as the Father knows the Son and the Son knows the Father and anyone to whom the Son decides to reveal Him (b). As genuinely as Luke’s gospel research was for Theophilus to know for certain the things he was taught concerning Jesus (c). As genuinely as examining yourself to know if Jesus Christ is really within you (d). As genuinely as when Christ knew when Spirit-power had gone out from Him to heal someone who had touched Him in the crowd (e). As genuinely as the gospel bears fruit and grows wherever in the world the unconditional-favor-of-grace of God in The Truth is really known (f), that is to really have known The Way of righteousness (g). <Notes> a) 1 Corinthians 13:12, 15:52-54; Philippians 3:20-21; Colossians 3:4; Romans 8:17, 29; 2 Thessalonians 1:10, b) Matthew 11:27, c) Luke 1:4, d) 2 Corinthians 13:5, e) Mark 5:30, f) Colossians 1:6, g) 2 Peter 2:21.
This ‘knowledge’ goes way beyond outward sight but requires revelation to open our eyes to really know Jesus (a). Without this revelation the Jews didn’t know that John the Baptist really was Elijah that was to come (b). How else could Jesus simply walk through a crowd of angry Jews that were going to throw Him over a cliff (c)? How many times was it that Jesus was only suddenly recognized by others (d)? And yet we can genuinely know the ‘inside’ nature/essence by the outward like a tree is known by its fruit (e). If Christian musicians want people to really “get it” and really know God, then they will have to “get them” beyond the ‘outer’ physical realm into the ‘inner’ realm of the Spirit, into the very heart of God. This is where fruit and righteousness will come from. But how can they lead others to something they do not have? And that’s why Christians, certainly those with the Spirit’s grace-gift of discernment – see New Covenant Ways – BT16, can ‘see’ that many Christian songs are coming from a place of “might and power” flesh and not from the realm of the Spirit. Remember that you can only be in one of those circles as a time because the circles don’t even touch – see Identity! Let us strive to make music from within the Spirit circle! <Notes> a) Luke 24:16, 31, b) Matthew 17:12, c) Luke 4:28-30, d) Mark 6:54; Matthew 14:35, e) Matthew 7:16, 12:33; Luke 6:44.
Just how genuine is this noun epignosis that we should desire this? The religious zealousness FOR God that the Jews has was not down-from/according-to genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of God (a). No! “God calls all people to be saved and/coupled to come by repentance to the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of The Truth” (b), who we can only genuinely, experientially, relationally epiginosko know is Christ (c) and His logos gospel message of The Truth (d). Some people “will always be learning (e) from teachers but never come to a genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of The Truth” (f). <Notes> a) Romans 10:2, b) 1 Timothy 2:4; 2 Timothy 2:25, c) John 14:6, d) Titus 1:1; Ephesians 1:13; Colossians 1:5, e) gnosis info-knowledge of the bible is implied, f) 2 Timothy 3:7.
However, if you genuinely want to experience sin, just embrace the OT Law, “for through the Torah Law of conditional-favor comes the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of sin” (a)! A sure fire way to “be given over by God to a depraved mind to do what should not be done” is to “absolutely not in fact examine to prove genuine God in/by/with having and holding [in your] genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge [of God]” (b) – in other words, stop looking for God to genuinely have and hold Him by experiential fellowship. That’s how we get into sin! Reading and studying the OT will just speed up the process! If Christians musicians want to lead people away from sin to a Holy God, then they will have to stay out of the OT Law or zealousness for it, but instead lead people to The Truth in Jesus Christ and to His Spirit of holiness, and this ‘learning’ won’t be through a ton of teaching gnosis info-knowledge of the bible but leading them into genuinely experiencing the Lord through fellowship with Him. The experts of the bible were “the blind leading the blind” (c). <Notes> a) Romans 3:20, b) Romans 1:28, c) Matthew 15:14.
Paul knows proseuchomai conversationally-prayer is the key, thus praying: “That your unconditional-love may abound more and more in/by/with genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge and/coupled all types of discernment, in order that you may approve what is excellent and so be pure and blameless for the Day of Christ, having been with ongoing effect filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ” (a). Paul knows what Christians really need, which is only granted in proseuche conversational-prayer: “that God . . . may give you the Spirit of wisdom and/coupled of revelation in/by/with the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of Him, having [with ongoing results] the eyes of your hearts enlightened, toward/reaching that you may eido mentally ‘see’ to perceive/know what is the hope to which He has called you, what are the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and also what is the immeasurable greatness of His Spirit-power toward us who have trusting-relying-faith” (b). <Notes> a) Philippians 1:9-11, b) Ephesians 1:17-19.
Therefore Paul never ceases to proseuchomai conversationally-pray for them to “be filled with the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of His will in/by/with all Spirit-kind sophia wisdom and sunesis connect-the-dots understanding (a) to walk (b) in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, routinely bearing fruit in every good work and/coupled routinely increasing in the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of God, routinely being strengthened with all Spirit-power down-from/according-to His glorious manifested kratos might toward/reaching all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father” (c). Whew, that’s a long sentence! Did Paul even breathe? Do you see the chain of events that comes from and relies on genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge? It was Paul’s goal for Christians “to reach all the riches of full assurance of sunesis connect-the-dots understanding towards/reaching the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of sophia wisdom and gnosis info-knowledge, so that no one may deceive you with plausible arguments” (d). This is a total slap in the face of Gnostics who claimed they had “secret or hidden” gnosis info-knowledge! <Notes> a) notice that Paul had to qualify these terms often used derogatorily of the natural human-kinds, b) this is only possible if you meet those conditions stated, c) Colossians 1:9-12, d) Colossians 2:2-4.
How is the “New man” that we received in water-baptism (a) renewed or refreshed routinely? “By the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge down-from/according-to the Image of Him that created him” (b)! What is the goal of Christ’s grace-gifts of apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds and/thus teach to equip (c) the saints to be the actual ministers? It is to “build up the Body-of-Christ until we ALL attain to the unity of The trusting-relying-Faith and/coupled the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of the Son of God towards/reaching a Perfect Man towards/reaching the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ in order that we many no longer be children tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes” (d). The solution to immunity from false teaching or heresy is not more bible study! That’s exactly what the Jewish teachers were using to confuse Jewish-Christians! In this case, you don’t ‘fight fire with fire’ but with buckets of “the Living Water” (see Spirit-Power-BT3) of the Holy Spirit’s revelational knowledge that only comes through intimate fellowship with Jesus! Again notice the chain of events that come from genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge! If Christian musicians want the results they see described here, they must start at the beginning of the line – there are no shortcuts! <Notes> a) Romans 6:4, b) Colossians 3:10, c) coach and facilitate, d) Ephesians 4:7-14.
Peter also knows what the proseuche conversational-prayer keys are to the kingdom: “May unconditional-favor-of-grace and peace be multiplied to you in/by/with the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. His divine Spirit-power has granted to us all things that pertain to zoe genuine-life and godliness dia thru-the-realizing-channel-of the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence dia thru-the-realizing-channel-of, which He has granted to us His precious and stupendous promises in order that dia thru-the-realizing-channel-of them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having already escaped from the corruption that is the world because of sinful desire. . . if these qualities – trusting-relying-faith, virtue, gnosis knowledge, self-control, steadfastness, godliness, brotherly love, unconditional-love – are yours and are increasing, they will keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful toward/reaching the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (a). Again, look at the chain of “dia channels, conduits, interfaces, avenues, or ways” that flow from the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of God and Jesus! <Notes> a) 2 Peter 1:2-8.
Evidently Peter, being stuck in Jerusalem, didn’t argue with many Gnostics so he isn’t as “touchy” about using the term gnosis–knowledge, but we see above that even Paul said the gnosis He desired was “hidden in Christ.” And in Philippians 3:8 Paul considered his rabbinic training a complete loss or detriment compared surpassing excellency of the gnosis info-knowledge of/belonging to Christ Jesus. So you sure won’t get this through book-learning! How are we going to possibly “escape the defilement of the world” but “in/by/with the genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (a)? Again, if Christian musicians want the results they see described here, they must start at the beginning of the line – there are no shortcuts! <Notes> a) 2 Peter 2:20.
As Christian musicians, do we want to keep promoting bible knowledge about God that actually kept the scholars from really knowing and loving God as the prophets did by mentally ‘seeing’ God, leaving the bible students only with conceit? Are we going to try to learn from God the old way or the completely different-in-kind New Covenant way? All the religions of the world, including the Jewish one, have a sacred book that consider “the way” to God, and their “book’s scholars” teach “that way.” That’s not what Jesus came to bring more of! He is now “the Way” and He left us His Spirit to continue to be “the Way” to the Father per John 14:6. The first sermon of the Church told us “the way” that God intends to communicate to His “men and women servants” throughout the Church age is through prophecy by revelation of the Spirit, thus completely destroying and rejecting the way of the “wise and rational understanding ones!” God keeps The Truth hidden from these people but freely gives it to “the younger or uneducated ‘lasts’ before the ‘firsts’ – poetic justice! Are we going to use religion’s ways to learn from God and thus be “ever learning but never really knowing,” or be like a little child by relentlessly asking, seeking, and knocking until it is given to us? Do we want just more “about” God through bible study, or genuinely learn directly from God through relationship? Are you ready to have your “eyes and ears opened” to really know the Lord?
And why are we trying to gain more knowledge about the Law when it actually brings about more experience with sin, actually multiplying it? Did it help the Jewish bible scholars? No! They were rank pagans! Only genuine, relational, koinonia-fellowship knowing of the Lord keeps us from sin! Only actual connection to the Vine of Christ produces any fruit of holiness or godliness! Only the devotion of conversational-prayer to make and keep that connection produces the chain of events we desire by the powerful means of the Spirit. Our “might and power” must be replaced with “by My Spirit” if we want any fruit – “apart from me you can do nothing” because “the flesh is useless.” Only genuinely knowing the Lord can renew us daily or transform us into His image and keep us from being deceived – because we know Christ’s voice we will not follow a stranger! We can only fight fire with “the living water” of the Holy Spirit, which gives us prophetic-rhema words, not gramma letters in more graphe scriptures! Everything comes to us through prayer! There are no shortcuts via book learning!