Thursday, March 19, 2009

So what is my theology now?

Having gone through so many things and seeing others go through hard times in their lives, I've come to trust God deeper. In the Pentecostal/Charmastic movement the emphasis is not on suffering. The emphasis is on deliverance. Here's the 7 steps to deliverance or the 10 steps to healing. I believe that makes for shallow Christians who are no more different than someone doing voodoo to protect them from evil spirits. You know what I mean....

My absolute favorite story in the Bible is Shadrach Meshach and Abendogo. As they are facing the fiery furnace they say "Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us but even if He doesn't, we're not going to serve your gods." That's real faith. God did deliver them but first they went into the fiery furnace. Sometimes we go into the fiery furnace of life but God can be in there with us just like He was with them.

In Hebrews 11, the great chapter on faith recounts so many of the great people of the Bible and how God wrought miracles for them. But even in that chapter the Bible speaks of those who were persecuted tormented and killed, who received a good testimony but did not receive the promise. I'm so glad God put chapters like that in the Bible. He rated those folks as highly as He did Moses and Abraham!

Do we serve God for what He can do for us or for who He is? I've met many people who have been disillusioned when life got rough and they went through the same doubts and confusions that I did but decided not to serve God. I know quite a few from my Bible school days who are no longer serving God. For the most part, these folks grew up in church but when life really hit them, their faith couldn't stand the test. I think I know the reason why that happened. Wrong expectations of God that they were taught.

God does work miracles but we live in a fallen natural world. God himself set the world into motion. God does not step into our circumstances every time and do a miracle for us. If He did, there would be no more death or disease. That would be nice but that's not reality. If He did miracles every time we asked like some kind of genie or heavenly grandfather, then that would not be the God of the Bible and God does not lie.

God did create a world in the beginning with no sickness or death. Man chose to sin and that brought sickness and death into the world. God gave man the free will to chose and man chose to sin. We pay the price today for what happened but God is creating a new heaven and earth where there will be no more sickness and death. That sounds harsh that you and me have to deal with sickness and death because of someone else choice doesn't it? We know actions have consequences and the consequences of Adam's and Eve's disobedience is far reaching. But we have a choice today to trust God through our short lifetime and then know an eternity that is free from all sickness and death.

I have had times when God has graciously intervened in my life and times He has given me the grace to go through the problem without a miracle of deliverance. I've learned to trust God with the outcome. Trusting God is a difficult place to get to but it's wonderful when you can reach that place knowing your life is secure in His hands. There are examples throughout the Old and New Testament for us to follow.

So my theology is a simple one of trusting God through life. there will be trouble and hard times but God will see me through. We live in a fallen world where we are bound by the laws of nature. I still believe in miracles but I trust God whether I have the outcome I want or not. It is a peaceful way to live. I do have the hope of eternity. This faith has brought me through the last few years with our little Sam.

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