Summary: The "inside secret" about our witness and His wisdom.
November 11, 2001
Paul talked about inside secrets; he called it the wisdom of God in a mystery. There are all kinds of mysteries. In the western world, when you say mystery you¡¦re talking about a who-done-it, or a puzzle to solve.
Solved puzzles can have surprise endings, or open up even greater puzzles. At the end of World War II the power of the atom was unleashed at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. We had no idea the size of tiger we held by the tail.
Today, with the help of computers, we are beginning to scratch the surface of many puzzles. In this scientific age we assume any unknown can be solved. Yet the depth of the mysteries of the universe are far from our understanding.
The meaning of Paul¡¦s word mystery, however, is not your typical puzzle. It is not an intricate labyrinth to be navigated. It is not unlocking the complexity of DNA structure.
The Greek word is musterion. It comes from the idea of silence imposed by initiation into religious rites It is an inside secret. It is not difficult to figure out once someone explains it from an inside perspective.
Take the picture shown on this page. The fellow is puzzled ¡V the marks he is looking at are nothing but gibberish to him. He couldn¡¦t figure it out in a million years. However, an 11 year-old Jewish boy happens along. He is just coming home from Hebrew instruction at the synagogue in preparation for his bar mitzvah. He looks at the gibberish and says, Awb ¡V father¡KFather Abraham!
Now, if an 11 year-old can understand something about which this erudite and enlightened congregation had no clue ¡V what¡¦s up with that? Simple ¡V it was an inside secret. The boy had been trained in the Hebrew language ¡V you haven¡¦t! That is Paul¡¦s kind of mystery.
Inside secrets can drive those on the outside to drink! Paul held that opinion. He said that people who are not spiritually motivated can¡¦t even understand things of the Spirit (1 Co 2.14).
I was raised in a community that included many people of Italian heritage. There were many inside secrets, especially when I started dating this one particular Italian gal. Her family gatherings were a swarm of inside secrets to me¡K
„Y They talked really fast and loudly; I mumbled six or seven words a minute when I could get them out above the roar.
„Y They mixed syntax, verbs, metaphors and even languages like a dyslexic alien on speed; I had my grammar corrected all the time at home. Thou must refrain from using split infinitives and colloquial idioms like ¡§ain¡¦t¡¨ dear boy!
„Y They were passionate about everything ¡V I was cold by nature, shy and insecure.
„Y They could pick up a few words or a phrase that sounded like just the middle phrase of a sentence in a long story ¡V and they understood each other; I was totally lost to the flow of the story. This was a family with inside secrets of communication.
I often felt like that new commercial. The kids have text pagers. They are all communicating in code.
SYT-OHN means, See Ya Tuesday, Outa Here Now.
SITMFM means She Is Too Mouthy For Me.