It’s one of those lies the enemy sows. Something that sounds like it makes sense but can be debilitating to the believer. It goes something like this, “I’m don’t really spend much time studying the Bible because I’m not really an academic.” Sometimes “not being an academic” is gauged by how well someone responded to their years in school. True, some were more naturally “into” school than others . . . but I’m not thinking that’s what makes the difference when it comes to knowing the Scriptures. Others might use the term, “not an academic,” to refer to how smart they think they are . . . believing that it’s their IQ, their Intelligence Quotient, that determines how driven they are to spend time in the Word. But as I continue reading in Ephesians this morning, I’m reminded it’s not about my IQ, but about my HQ.
I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened . . . (Ephesians 1:16-18a ESV)
Paul writes the Ephesians so that they may grasp the fullness of who they are, and what they possess, in Christ. Ephesians is the book that eradicates a believer’s inferiority complex as they realize they have been blessed with “every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places” (1:3). To that end, in my reading this morning, Paul prays that they would know three things: 1) the hope of their calling; 2) the riches of His inheritance, and; 3) the greatness of His power toward us who believe (1:18b-19). And how does Paul expect this will happen? Through parsing the Greek? By reading books? By listening to lectures? By straining their brains and leveraging to the max whatever IQ they have? Nope. Paul says it happens as “the eyes of your heart” are enlightened . . . that it occurs as a function of their HQ . . . their Heart Quotient.
To quote one of my favorite commentators, “This figurative expression teaches us that proper understanding of divine realities is not dependent on our having keen intellects but rather tender hearts” (William MacDonald).
It is the eyes of the heart that behold the wonders of God. And that, through the illuminating work of “the Spirit of wisdom and revelation.”
The deep things of God are not kept just for the seminarian. Knowing God through His Word is not restricted to those who are jazzed by intellectual pursuit. But for all those who have been born anew and given hearts of flesh to replace their sin calloused hearts of stone, the knowledge of the deep things of God are available to those whose new hearts are set upon Him. Those who hunger, will be satisfied. Those who ask, seek, and knock, will be given, and will find, and will have opened to them the doors of wisdom and the revelation of the fullness of the glories of God. Not because of their brain power . . . but because of their heart preparedness.
O’ that I might have a higher HQ . . . that the Spirit’s illuminating work of revelation might have free access to the eyes of my inner being. That this sinner-saved-by-grace might, by that same grace, set his affections on things above and not on things of this world, so that he might more fully grasp the blessings that are his in heavenly places.
Mine is to not worry about the SQ, the Spirit Quotient, for it has been poured forth in abundance, taking up residence within me. I need not be overly concerned as to my IQ, pretty much hard-wired with that by the Creator. But my HQ? That, I can do something about. Guard it from distraction. Submit it to the Savior. Set it on the heavenly. Tune it to the Spirit’s frequency.
By His grace . . . for His glory . . .