An open Bible and a cup of coffee.

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding”
(Proverbs 3:5)

The Bible calls us to resist the temptation to rely on our own, unaided human reason. The fact is, none of us could reason at all if not for God’s enablement (John 15:5). Remember, the sinful attitude of self-sufficiency, of thinking there is no need to inquire of the Lord to get His perspective on things, was a catalyst in the tragic downfall of King Saul (1 Samuel 14:1-19, especially v. 14). Loving the Lord with all our mind (Mark 12:30) requires that we believe His truth claims and obey His moral commands (John 14:15). Though this sounds simple enough to do, in reality it is much more difficult than most of us realize. Part of the problem is that, though many Christians throughout the ages have taken theological correctness seriously (as well they should), in their zeal they end up going well beyond the borders and limits of true doctrine. Most often (but not always) this occurs through a philosophy known as theology based on heretical inversion. This tongue twisting label describes the practice of over-reacting to an obvious heresy by running as far from it (philosophically) as possible, and from that most distant position setting up an alternative theology. If we begin to operate this way, we end up, ironically, allowing the heresies we detest to determine what we choose to believe. No Christian who loves God and His word would consciously conduct himself in this way. And yet, this has been a serious problem in the church throughout her history. When presented with an aberrant theology that gives man far too much power and authority, some Christians react by erecting a theology that reduces man to a puppet on a string. This overreaction can lead to New Age Panentheism, the view that God’s will is the only true will in the universe, which effectively makes the universe God’s body. Other forms of pendulum thinking include lawlessness as a reaction to legalism (and vice versa), or cold, stoic-like, loveless orthodoxy as a reaction to emotionalism and its carelessness regarding doctrinal precision (and vice versa). In each example, and in countless others, neither side is correct in their approach. A simple return to the Scriptures, a return as free as possible from external presuppositions and preconceived notions is needed. God is very surprising, and we must not presume to know what He is like or how He ought to govern man. “To whom will ye liken me,” demanded the Lord, “and make me equal, and compare me, that we may be like?” (Isaiah 46:5). From this we might conclude that God is unknowable, but this would be wrong (Jeremiah 9:23-24; Psalm 9:16; John 1:18; 14:9). God and His ways are knowable, but only if we allow Him to disclose these things to us. His self revelation will be far more wonderful than anything we could imagine anyhow.

God bless you as you seek to know Him better today,

pastor john