Can You Trust God?

6 years 8 months ago #278501 by Alethea Thompson
Forethought: I always find it intriguing that we look only to the New Testament to understand what it means to be a Christian. I’ve seen some people outright reject reading the Old Testament altogether because Christ’s ministry is all that is necessary to understand what it is God wants, and who God is.

Anyways, here’s my thoughts for the day:

We often speak of God as someone we can place full trust in. Have you ever considered what that means?

Look to the 10 Commandments and we assume that everything is clean cut. But there is one particular commandment that may not be fully understood.

‘anah sheqer ‘ed rea’
Or “Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness against thy neighbor”

We simplify this to “Thou shalt not lie”, but that’s not really what it is saying. It’s saying not to condemn someone for something they didn’t do. The key is “‘ed”, which speaks for testimony, evidence, witness in the context of seeing something take place.

Understanding this is key to understanding the value of full trust in our Father. Because, as much as we would like to believe God does not use lies himself, the truth is far from it. God has, at least once, used deception to bring about His Will.

1 Kings 22:19-23
Then Micaiah said, “therefore hear the word of the Lord: I saw the Lord sitting on His Thrown, and all the hosts of heaven standing by, on His right hand and on His left. And the Lord said “Who will persuade Ahab to go up, that he may fall at Remote Gilead?” So one spoke in this manner, and another spoke in that manner. “Then a spirit came forward and stood before the Lord and said “I will persuade him”. The Lord said to him “In what way?” So he said “I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets” And the Lord said “You shall persuade him, and also prevail. Go out and do so.” Therefore look! The Lord has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these propehts of yours, and the Lord has declared disaster against you.”

As you read the rest of the story, you find that it is true- Ahab followed the advice of his prophets and was destroyed in the process.

We believe that healthy trust is built simply on honesty. But that is not what a trust in God is about, it’s about trusting in His vision. It’s about believing that once we surrender completely to God, whatever God puts us in position to do, it’s not meaningless- that He will make our role count.

Simply moving to make the bare minimum commitment to being a follower of Christ is simple when compared to the reality of becoming a Servant of God. The level of trust, even when God uses deception such as the story in 1 Kings, is something a true Christian has to come to grips with. And that is the most difficult task of all.
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6 years 8 months ago #278502 by
Replied by on topic Can You Trust God?
Not many people know this about me, but I am a Red Letter Christian. This doesn't really mean much, though, in terms of spirituality. Basically, it means that one follows the teachings of Christ... but that's it. Nothing else in the Bible matters. In my case, this is mostly because I do not interpret the bible as a literal thing in any sense of the word. Funny enough, the Methodist Church (the place I attend) has the same view: United Methodist Church on the Bible . We are not biblical literalists; we believe that humans were inspired to write and tell these stories, inspired by the spirit of God, but were not guided directly by God's hand. Because of this, human society can evolve beyond the text of the Bible. And, much of it can be seen as outdated.

I realize this is a problem for many Abrahamic believers, but.. oh well. This worldview makes more sense to me, anyway. That is my real justification for ignoring much of the Old Testament. I find what does work, and I use it... but, ultimately, I'm concerned with the spirit of the life that Jesus Christ lived. His generosity and his unwillingness to be anything more than who he was.. it is inspiring.

This passage, then, is really indicative of a lesson we should all learn: even when we are perfectly in line with the Force... we can end up destroyed. Just because we listen to the Force and try to act in accordance with it does not mean we will come out on top. We are used in many ways. It is up to us to create our own life anyway. From the Sith perspective, I have to say that sitting back and being a pawn in the universe's game is ill-advised. Life is complex and requires that we participate in it. Trust in the Force doesn't mean accepting defeat; it means grabbing life by the horns and being open to being flailed about in the arena! It is only when we move with the bull, remain loose yet steadfast... only then will we life with grace and openness. The Force may whip us around... put us in ruin... it could do anything.

It is, surely, hard to accept this. We believe that when we live our best life, we will be rewarded. This is not the case. In fact, we must take our reward.

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6 years 8 months ago #278554 by
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For me, God, or the idea of God, is beyond comprehension. Many people that debate the validitity of the Bible ususally use the arguement that, over the years, the translations have changed more and more until the final product is not what it once was, and many things are lost. And to that I have to agree. Translations change, it is not possible to maintain perfect translations across languages, cultures, and ages.

But in the end I have a simple philosophy. God is benevolent and loves his children (or at least that is what I beleive). We are bad children, we dig in our heels and fight against Him all the time, but he still loves us and guides us. So, despite tranlation issues and changes in some messages, I believe one simple truth. He loves us and has our best intentions in mind.

We can look to Job, whom God allowed the Devil to openly attack and make his life miserable. He lost everything, his family, his wealth, even his health. But he refused to lose faith in his God, because he knew it was a test. Can we consider this a cruel and unusual punishment? Yes, but I believe his final rewards will be all the greater for his undying faith.

As a being that, I believe, is outside of time and physical space itself, we cannot possbily be able to understand the full picture. We aren't meant to. Walk by faith, not by sight and all that.

So can we trust God. Yes. Is it easy? No, and it never was meant to be. But then again, all things worth doing are never easy.

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6 years 8 months ago #278559 by
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As Arisaig said, the idea or concept of God is beyond our comprehension, I have being lately thinking that everything that we would like to do for God should be done through doing it to others. I think that God is in the things he created, the universe, so if we want to make God happy we should make other happy, or the world a better place.
So trusting God is trusting in ourselves first and then trusting on others, and that "everything else shall be added unto you"

The Bible and scriptures are a good basis on which to look for answers, but we need to put that answers in context or ourselves and the people around us, to be proactive and factors of change around us.

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6 years 8 months ago #279330 by
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It's true, too much attention is placed on the New testament and not enough on the Old. I actually don't like to make the distinction though. It's all one scripture. However, a local church that I watch on TV every Sunday is good about referring to the Old and New equally.

As much as I believe in God, I still have doubts, problems trusting God. Anyone who says they don't have doubts is lying. Anyway, too many bad things have happened to me in my life that I have trouble trusting that God is looking out for me. I kind of feel like he made me broken from the beginning.

So yeah, I'm sure he's out there. I've felt his presence before, but just haven't found him any time in probably a decade.

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6 years 8 months ago #279340 by steamboat28
Replied by steamboat28 on topic Can You Trust God?

Aharon wrote: It's all one scripture.

Not exactly. It's about 66 cherry-picked scriptures rolled into one book. This is important because it shows the different authorship (or purported authorship) of each book, giving us context to the stories themselves.
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