The Mistaken Assumptions of Fallen Bipartite Man
They Don't Get It:
Brent B. (1997)
They Get It:
The Spiritual Man, Vol. 1, Chapters 1-3, by Watchman Nee
“That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him; having the eyes of your heart enlightened, that ye may know...” (Eph. 1.17,18). Here the apostle prayed for the regenerated Ephesian believers that they might receive the spirit of wisdom and revelation so as to really know God intuitively. Whether this spirit of wisdom and revelation is a latent power of the believer’s spirit activated by God through prayer or is wisdom and revelation given to the believer’s spirit by the Holy Spirit as a result of prayer, it nonetheless gives the believer “the knowledge of God.” Our intuition needs wisdom and revelation.
We need wisdom to discern what is of God and what is of our own selves. We need wisdom to detect false apostles and disguised angels of light (2 Cor. 11.13,14). God-given wisdom is not given to our mind, but He gives wisdom to our spirit. He causes us to have wisdom in our intuition, and He leads us by our intuition into the way of wisdom.
We need revelation to truly know Him. The spirit of revelation is the effect of God’s movement in our spirit. It enables us to sense His desire in our intuition. It helps us to perceive His move. Only thus may we come to the true knowledge of God.
God not only gives us the spirit of wisdom and revelation that we may really know Him in our intuition, He also enlightens “the eyes of our heart” for us to know. The word “heart” here is understanding (dianoia) in the Greek text of Stephens 1550. It is the same dianoia as in Ephesians 4.18—being the faculty of knowing and understanding. Hence Ephesians 1.17-18 speaks of “know” in two ways: the first “know” is the knowing of intuition; the second, the knowing of mind. The Spirit of revelation comes to the innermost recess of the entire being. God reveals His own Self to our spirit that we may know Him intuitively. But this is only knowing Him in our intuition. Our inward man now knows, yet our outward man is still ignorant.
For this reason our spirit must enlighten our mind, causing the latter to understand the meaning in our spirit and so giving knowledge to our outward man. Revelation occurs in the spirit, but it reaches to the mind. Revelation is in the intuition of the spirit, while enlightenment falls on the mind of the soul. In the intuition we know by sensing it; in the mind we know by understanding it.
“That ye may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, to walk worthily of the Lord unto all pleasing, bearing fruit in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God” (Col. 1.9-10). This passage shows us that it needs spiritual wisdom and spiritual understanding to know God’s will, to do His pleasure, and to know Him in a real way.
Spiritual wisdom, as we have already seen, is given to our spirit by God. In the meanwhile, we also need to have spiritual understanding to understand the revelation which God has given to our spirit’s intuition. For whereas the spirit’s intuition causes us to detect the move of God, spiritual understanding enables us to comprehend the meaning of God’s movement. If we seek to know in the spirit His will in all things, we will undoubtedly increase in the knowledge of God. To grow in God means to increase in our knowledge of Him. Thus shall our intuition develop greatly and our life ripen until we are filled with God. (pp. 150-151, The Better Covenant)