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1) How does one practically receive the "light of the knowledge" of the Glory of God in

2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.( AKJV )

in his/her heart?

This question is a continuation of "What are the differences and similarities in the meanings of “light” in 2 Corinthians 4:6 and “brightness” in Hebrews 1:3 ?

2) Is this the same as:

  1. Acts 9:18 - And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized.

  2. Acts 26:18 - to open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

  3. Acts 16:14 - And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul.

  4. Ephesians 1:18 - the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

  5. Luke 24:45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,

( AKJV )

?

3) Is this the same as the vail in

2 Corinthians 3:16 - Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away

being taken away?

4) Is the vail one's dullness of heart mentioned in

  1. Matthew 13:15 - for this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

  2. Acts 28:27 - for the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest >they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.

  3. Hebrews 5:11 - Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing.

( AKJV )

?

Note: My seeking is to find a solution to the problem of not understanding the scriptures as the Lord would want me to understand. So better these questions are dealt together than in separate pieces as they are all, in my understanding, are related to the receiving of the "light of the knowledge" of the Glory of God in 2 Corinthians 4:6

  • The tags put are the best I could find. Some help is appreciated in adjusting them. Thank you :-) – Siju George Jan 19 at 0:53
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    It is interesting to note that in your texts numbered 2. to 5. under heading 2) these were not people studying their bibles on their own, but people who heard the preaching of the gospel by someone sent, by Christ himself, to minister that gospel. How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! Romans 10:15. – Nigel J Jan 19 at 8:39
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How does one receive God’s light make it shine in our hearts?

About the Source of physical and spiritual light, Paul writes: “God is he who said: “Seeing it is God, that said, Light shall shine out of darkness, who shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (ASV, 2 Cor 4:6; Ge 1:2-5)

The immediate context of 2 Co 4:3 is that of speaking the gospel.

God conveys spiritual light primarily through the Bible. So as we study the Bible and take in knowledge from God, we are allowing his light to shine toward us. Through the Bible, God sheds light and tells us how we can do his will.

Since we have been granted the privilege of being God’s ministers, we must keep ourselves clean so that we like mirrors can reflect His glory.

Spiritually dark individuals cannot see God's glory or its reflection from Jesus Christ. But as God’s servants, we catch the glorious light from the Scriptures and reflect it to others. If those now in spiritual darkness are to be saved, they need light from God. With great joy and zeal, then, we obey the divine command to let light shine out of darkness to God's glory

Jesus told his followers: “Ye are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a lamp, and put it under the bushel, but on the stand; and it shineth unto all that are in the house. 16 Even so let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16, ASV) Our fine conduct can cause others to give glory to God. (1 Peter 2:12)

Thus there is no connection between Heb 1:3 and 2 Co 4:6.

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  • Indeed a very good answer +1 – Ozzie Ozzie Jan 22 at 16:09
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Understanding the Light of the Gospel...

Ephesians 1:17-18 [17]That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

The context reveals that opening our eyes to be enlightened (to know the truths of God) requires God's gift of "spirit of wisdom and revelation" to know God and his glory.

...Of the glory of Christ

2 Corinthians 4:3-6 [3]But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: [4]In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. [5]For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake. [6]For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

The context of this text shows us that the lost were unbelievers whilst those who had the light of the knowledge of the glory of God were believers. To believe the gospel of Christ is to be enlightened and to be delivered from darkness.

The glory of God ( = light of God) is equivalent to the face of Jesus Christ, that is, the very person of Jesus Christ. We read from another Pauline text that in Jesus himself all the fulness of the Godhead dwells bodily (Colossians 2:9). This shows that Jesus is deity. He is God by nature in so much as he is the "image of God". Paul in Col 1:15 says that Jesus in his pre existence was the "invisible image of God" by being the Son of God before "all things" were created (i.e. before time, from all eternity) which showed that he wad of the same nature with God (the "Father"). Paul in Hebrews 1:3 showed us that Jesus was the "very image of his substance" (ASV), which meant that He was con substantial (" of the same nature") with the Father because all of what the original contained, the image also contained all of that. The Son of God was not the Father but are of same nature just as the image was not the original but of the same form.

The unveiling of the Son of God

2 Corinthians 3:16 - Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away

The same motiff of the gospel of Christ being the light that shines in the soul , receiving Christ by faith.

"The veil shall be taken away; not the veil with which God covered and veiled the mysteries of the gospel, (that was already taken away upon Christ’s coming in the flesh), but the veil of blindness, which they had drawn over their own souls. Though the light of the gospel shineth clearly, and Christ be unveiled, yet until men, by a true faith, receive Christ, and turn from sinful courses to the obedience of the gospel, they see little or nothing of Christ." (Matthew Poole's Commentary)

Conclusion

Therefore, to believe in the gospel of Christ is to believe that Jesus Christ is the divine Son of God. Those who have faith in Jesus as both Lord and God (John 20:28) were rescued from darkness into God's marvelous light. We had been shifted from darkness to the Light i.e. the Son of God, in whom forgiveness of sins is found (Col 1:15). NT texts showing either Jesus or the Spirit of God opening the hearts of peoples to understand this gospel (e.g. Acts 9:18, 16:14, 26:18) shows that it requires God's will and power to influence our hearts and thoughts into accepting Jesus Christ as fully God, who bled and died for our sins (cf. John 1:1, 1:14, Acts 20:28).

Summary

One does super naturally receive the "light of the knowledge" of the Glory of God in 2 Corinthians 4:6 by God himself opening our hearts. And to believe in the gospel of the only Son of God, the true image of God requires something very practical which is to hear the word of God which also includes bible study.

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How does one practically receive the “light of the knowledge” of the Glory of God in 2 Corinthians 4:6

2 Corinthians 4:6 (NET Bible)

" For God, who said “Let light shine out of darkness,” is the one who shined in our hearts to give us the light of the glorious knowledge[b] of God in the face of Christ.[c]

In one of his prayers Jesus said that to gain the gift of everlasting life ,He says we must keep - taking knowledge- of God and Christ: "Now this is eternal life—that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you sent." John 17:3 (NET Bible)

The Greek word -γινωσκωσιν σε- "ginōskōsin se " translated "that they may know You" implies the continuous taking in knowledge, that results in the privileged state of knowing God. In context of 2 Corinthians 4:6 it refers to the spiritual light that God gives his servants by means of the teachings of His son Jesus, this knowledge is glorious because it involves knowing the many qualities , personality and purpose for mankind, of the Creator.To "know Him" also means having a close bond of love for him and for his son Jesus .

So to receive the "light of knowledge"one has to meditate on God's sayings as revealed to us by Christ and apply those sayings in their every day life. The Apostles succeeded and in doing so they have their names on the foundation stones of Heavenly New Jerusalem.

Revelation 21:14 (NET Bible)

14 "The wall of the city has twelve foundations, and on them are the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb."

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How does one receive the light of the knowledge of the Glory of God (2 Corinthians 4:6)?

For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.


Paul’s phrasing here implies, I think, that the light of knowledge (φωτισμός τῆς γνώσεως) is something that is already possessed by those in whose hearts God has already shined: For God … hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of knowledge.

It might be relevant to observe that the word “give” is not in the Greek text (πρὸς φωτισμὸν), so that a more literal reading of the verse might be something like shined in our hearts, for the illumination of the knowledge (Orthodox New Testament), or who did shine in our hearts, for the enlightening of the knowledge (Young’s Literal Translation). In other words, it is God’s shining in our hearts that gives us the light of knowledge of His Glory.


Perhaps it is also worth considering the meaning of the underlying Greek represented by the English word knowledge in virtually all translation. This word is γνῶσις – gnosis, which refers to what some lexicons translate as “esoteric knowledge.” It might be distinguished from ἐπιστήμη (episteme)1 – practical, factual knowledge.


If God has already shined the light of knowledge of His Glory, why might we feel it is lacking? Here I think we can refer to a preceding verse (v.3):

But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In who the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

But what if one supposes that he or she “believes”, but still struggles to recognize the light of God within themselves? One might here then contemplate what it really means to believe (πιστεύω – pisteuō). The word in antiquity did not represent some abstract acknowledgement of facts, but rather full trust and faith in something or someone (in fact, “faith” and “belief” are indistinguishable in Greek – both are represented by πιστεύω). One must examine oneself closely, I think, and honestly assess whether one is blinded by the god of this present world - which, depending on one’s particular station, seems to be a god of self-centeredness, humanism, or ultra-rationalism (e.g. reducing Scripture to a collection of propositions from which to construct syllogisms).

The knowledge we are discussing is not something yet to be acquired, but is something that God has placed within us, but which needs to be uncovered. In the preceding chapter of the Epistle, Paul wrote (3:15):

Even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away.


In what does this turning to the Lord consist? I would argue that it consists in keeping the commandments within the gospel of Christ that Paul refers to. This is taught elsewhere in Scripture:

Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him (John 14:23).

As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love (John 15:9-10).

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity (Matthew 7:21-23).


Referring to this subject, the 19th century Russian spiritual writer, Ignatius Brianchaninov,2 commented:

From these words of the Lord it is evident that the commandments of the Gospel must be so studied that they become the possession, the property of the mind; only then is the exact, constant fulfillment of them possible such as the Lord requires. The Lord reveals Himself to the doer of the commandments spiritually, and He is seen with the spiritual eye, with the mind. The person sees the Lord in himself, in his thoughts and feelings, transfigured by the Holy Spirit.3


I think that all of the other allusions you include are relevant. What they have in common is that they refer the knowledge of God not as something to be attained, but rather as something that has been instilled within us, or at least presented to us, but is hidden until we make ourselves receptive to it. Commenting on the passage surrounding Matthew 13:15 (one that you cite), for example, the 4th century Church Father John Chrysostom4 wrote:

“It would have been fitting, then,” one may say, “to have opened their eyes, if they cannot see.” Yes, if the blindness were natural, it would be fitting to open them. But because it was a voluntary and self-chosen blindness, He said not simply, “They see not,” but rather “seeing, they see not.” The blindness is of their own wickedness.


1. This word appears only once in the New Testament, and that in a variant of Philippians 4:8, but it appears occasionally in the writings of the Church Fathers and over 60 times in the Greek Septuagint. It may be that in 1st century Koine Greek, γνῶσις came to represent both types of knowledge, just as English only has the single word “knowledge” (although other languages retain a distinction – e.g. Spanish conocer v. saber, German kennen v. wissen).
2. 1807-1867. Formerly a military engineer under the patronage of Emperor Nicholas I, he renounced his life in “the world” and became a monk and later a recluse. He is considered one of the most authoritative Eastern Orthodox writers of the 19th century.
3. The Arena (Holy Trinity Monastery, 1997), p.3 (The first edition of this book was originally published in India).
4. Born c.349 in Antioch, died 407 in Pontus. His authority as an exegete is respected by Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholics, Anglicans and Protestants alike.

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