23This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, nor the strong man in his strength, nor the wealthy man in his riches. 24But let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD, who exercises loving devotion, justice, and righteousness on the earth for I delight in these things,” declares the LORD. Jeremiah 9:23-24
This passage is familiar with a lot of people. Yet, for many people they understand this passage rather loosely in that they claim something like, “George, I have known God for years.” Or I have heard, “I have studied my Bible and learned about God.” But many of us, including me, are missing some of the depths of the Hebrew language associated with this passage. For all this Hebrew grammar information is how the Holy Spirit wanted these passages penned. Since we all agree this passage is the “Word of God,” what message was the Holy Spirit trying to convey to us? In the Hebrew language there are three classifications of verbs. These three classes are simple, intensive, and causative.
So, we will look at two of these classes, and their subclasses associated with this passage. The two are: The intensive (piel, pual or hithpael,) and causative (hiphil and hophal.) A breakdown of the passage flows as follows.
“Let him glory” is intensive. So, this means emphatic and passionate glorying in knowing God. Similar to the word “praise” halal to be “clamorously foolish,” it is let go in glorying in knowing God.
“Glory in this,” emphatic and passionate glorying again.
“That he understands,” causative (hiphil.) This is where it gets really good. Causative means in this case that “God causes us to know him.” We can’t know him on our own efforts. Though our wills are involved, the Holy Spirit is the ultimate motivator. Luke 10:22 states, “All things have been entrusted to Me by My Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.” So, Jesus has the say-so as to whom the Father is revealed. In 1 Corinthians 2:9-11, “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived the things God has prepared for those who love him,” these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. “For what man knows the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? Even so the things of God knows no man, but the Spirit of God.”
After all Job went through and thinking he “knew” God, he was quite humbled by the Lord. In the end Job said in 42:5-6, “I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You. Therefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” The Hebrew word for “know” can also be translated as “see.” Job went from knowing “about” God by hearing about him but he went to a deeper level when he stated, “now I see you.” As with Job we should go from glory to glory in knowing God. How endless are his depths. In 1995 I had an experience where the Lord allowed me to visit heaven in an out of body experience. I won’t write everything I saw, but I saw deep into other heavens, so deep that I could not comprehend and could not handle even looking at it. It was too great and awesome. We who know the Lord, we will see these same things one day. A lady I told this heavenly story to was jealous that I had such an experience. My response was: “You just did have this experience in a sense, for I am just the messenger to let people know who know the Lord they will one day see what I saw.”
Let us keep allowing the Holy Spirit to reveal the Father to us, into the depths of God, for as we read in Psalms 42:7-8, “Deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterfalls; all Your waves and billows have gone over me. The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime, and in the night His song shall be with me, a prayer to the God of my life.”