Been thinking a lot lately about the difference between trusting our beliefs about God rather than trusting God. Our beliefs about God are based on a whole lot of factors which may actually obscure God and prevent us from trusting, from having faith, in him.
In his book “The Sin of Certainty”, Peter Enns identifies some of these factors:
No one just “follows” the Bible. We interpret it as people with a past and present, and in community with others, within certain traditions, none of which is absolute. Many factors influence how we “follow” the Bible. None of us rises above our place in the human drama and grasps God with pure clarity, without our own baggage coming along for the ride. We all bring our broken and limited selves into how we think of God
Peter Enns, “The Sin of Certainty” p 17
“When we become simply a promoter or a defender of a particular belief, something within us dies. That is not believing God–it is only believing our belief about Him. . . . If our certainty is only in our beliefs, we develop a sense of self-righteousness, become overly critical, and are limited by the view that our beliefs are complete and settled.”
It is reassuring to find that even as the nineteenth century moved into the twentieth, believers like Chambers were thinking about the difference between a ‘who’ and a ‘what’ focus for faith.
Being a follower of Jesus is not focussed on what we believe…it centres on who we believe in. If we say we believe in Jesus but the set of beliefs by which we run our lives don’t resemble his way of living, something must be wrong…