Can You Trust God?

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30 Mar 2017 10:16 #279410 by Gisteron
Replied by Gisteron on topic Can You Trust God?
Sure, I suppose there are people who don't view God as a character, but as a force of nature instead. But are they the ones typically questioning God's motives, or even asserting that it has one? Now I haven't conducted any studies on this, but it appears to me that by far the majority of people who believe in a god or more, do believe it to be an agend with power and a will of its own. I would also assert without any further proof that within the context of this thread, we are not primarily concerned with conceptions of God that are not persons by these crucial charcteristics for they would for that reason not be subject to our trust or distrust as an aspect of relationships between persons.

I am furthermore rather confident in saying that insofar as a person, who believes in a personal god for the way most people believe in gravity, exists, they have not done enough to inform the rest of mankind of it yet. I for one have yet to meet anybody like that. But regardless, even if anybody does, what I am criticizing is this specific kind of relationship (or treatment thereof) where the victim is either themselves convinced that blind uncritical trust is paramount or is advised by others to not question or criticize the other party. Whether they believe in that party the way most people believe in gravity should in my humble opinion be unimportant in evaluating the healthiness of that relationship.

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30 Mar 2017 13:07 #279430 by steamboat28
Replied by steamboat28 on topic Can You Trust God?
"Those who never rebelled against God or at some point in their lives shaken their fists in the face of heaven, have never encountered G-d at all." -- Catherine Marshall

I cannot speak for other texts, but readings of the Christian scriptures encourage questioning and discovering and testing of spirits, rather than a blind obedience.

Furthermore, to the title question, one can trust G-d to be G-d always, in the same way that I can always trust Gisteron to be Gisteron. That speaks nothing of the relationship that Gist's plans may have to my well-being, but knowing him I feel he would attempt to minimize active harm upon my person if he perceived his machinations would lead toward it. Trusting that someone has our best interests is different than trusting them to be who and what they are. That's why scripture encourages us to know G-d, to understand His heart and actions as best our finite minds are able, to love what He loves and to act how He would act. Putting our wills in accordance with G-d's will removes any conflict of interest that may exist there, and G-d's plans will work toward a better future for all, rather than just ourselves.

This is the way G-d is spoken of in Christian scripture.

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30 Mar 2017 15:48 #279455 by Senan
Replied by Senan on topic Can You Trust God?
Perhaps a better question is "can you trust yourself?"

I admittedly no longer attend a Christian church and I haven't claimed to be a Christian in decades, but I was once on board with the idea that God was infallible and whether we understood his motives or not, he could be trusted to do what is best for all mankind even if it seems wrong at the time. What I have discovered for myself over time is that in my life, it doesn't matter if I can trust God completely if I cannot trust myself to act accordingly. Trust in God, or the Force, means nothing if I do not have the will to trust in them when all evidence says I shouldn't.

The example of Job was used earlier, and it may help to illustrate my point. Job put his complete faith in God despite being punished over and over. God was testing him, and Job placed his trust in his God throughout. More importantly, though, Job did not waiver from his personal convictions. He followed God's word despite all of the evidence to the contrary. It would seem that God had abandoned him, but he remained steadfast in his belief that God could be trusted. This was not through the will of God. It was his will; he decided to remain faithful. When he was finally rewarded, he gave God due credit, but I would say that Job was rewarded for being true to himself. He fought through the hardships. He made it happen for himself.

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30 Mar 2017 23:06 #279543 by Alethea Thompson
Replied by Alethea Thompson on topic Can You Trust God?
There is a reason I didn't ask the question "Can you trust yourself", it's because it is an entirely different question. It's also an entirely different question to ask "Can you trust what man understands of God".

To ask "Can I trust myself" or "Can I trust what others understand of God" is not answering whether or not you can place your life in the hands of a being that you claim to give everything of yourself to.
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31 Mar 2017 02:13 #279565 by Senan
Replied by Senan on topic Can You Trust God?
Thanks for clarifying, Alethea. I misunderstood the real question you were asking and I'm not sure I have an answer for the real question. I'll have to think about it. Thank you.

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31 Mar 2017 16:01 #279601 by Aharon
Replied by Aharon on topic Can You Trust God?

JamesSand wrote:

Anyway, too many bad things have happened to me in my life that I have trouble trusting that God is looking out for me.



Hubris beyond contemplation to imagine that God is looking out for you

And twice that to imagine that you can comprehend what is best for you in the way that the infinite and almighty does.

God is many things (including but not limited to all things)

however, despite the infinite and all things that God is, God is NOT a giant hand that will descend from the skies to stop a car crash, or pull smoke from your lungs, or rearrange your genes to make you taller, smarter, or less prone to this, that or the other woe.


God's not looking out for us? He is omnipresent and omnipotent, so why not?

But I get your point. He lets bad things happen. It isn't his fault. We screwed up the world, not Him.
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31 Mar 2017 22:23 #279635 by Gisteron
Replied by Gisteron on topic Can You Trust God?

Aharon wrote: God's not looking out for us? He is omnipresent and omnipotent, so why not?

But I get your point. He lets bad things happen. It isn't his fault. We screwed up the world, not Him.

And of course we have the power to screw up his plan and he is powerless to fix it, because that omnipotence thing you mentioned as recently as the previous line is all but forgotten now. Or, alterntively, what ever we call "screwed up" was his plan all along and... well, do I even need to add on to that any more?

There is a reason the problem of evil (or suffering, to keep it a tad more modern) is still being brought up, millennia after Epicurus. Whether we accept it or not, if we have a set of premises that are contrary, their conjunction is false, no matter how many more assumptions we try and add to the mix.

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