Truly, I tell you with certainty, unless a person is born from abovehe cannot see.
(John 3:3 ISV)
There is something very searching for us as to our being children of God, being the spiritual children of the travail of Christ. This is not something that is extra to the Christian life, or for those who advance to certain heights and degrees. Right from our new birth, you and I, every one of us, ought to have a faculty of spiritual understanding and perception and knowledge that is possessed by no other person outside this Kingdom! We could spend much time in pointing out the tragedies that have come into Christianity because of failure to recognize or live up to this. I would go so far as to say that the largest proportion of all the trouble between Christians is due to either a lack of, or a failure to live on, the basis of spiritual understanding, spiritual discernment, spiritual perception, spiritual knowledge. There is any amount of natural knowledge in the Christian world: Bible knowledge, prophetic knowledge, and what not. But spiritual knowledge is a rare commodity; and yet it is supposed to be a constituent of our new birth from above, a faculty that we ought to have.
Now, if you are thinking: “Then woe is me — I don’t know much about that!” the Lord is simply saying to you: “Look here, this is yours by rights. It is not some extra thing to which you attain by struggle and effort, or by years of laborious Christian living, or by some specific act, some terrible upheaval in your spiritual life. It is a birth thing, it is a birth right: you have a right to this!” But it may be that, after all, you do know in a way, although you do not know that you know! You have a new sense, a new faculty, a new “something” in you, that causes you to know — in some measure at least — what is of the Lord and what is not, what is spiritual and what is not. But oh for the increase of that! It is the development of that, the increase of that, which is the apprenticeship in the school of Christ. We learn by mistakes, we learn by blunders, but the thing that we are learning is not something objective. We are learning inwardly that such and such is not the way of Life and we should do well to avoid it; and that such and such IS the way of Life, and that is the way for us to go. We learn it inwardly. It is a new kind of knowledge.
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