It is better to trust in the Lord Than to put confidence in princes. Psalm 118:9
Had a little chat this morning with a lady about our religious differences—it was polite and respectful, but it still had that ‘Christians-aren’t-tolerant-and-everyone-else-in-the-world-is’ cloud hanging over it. That attitude of course comes with the territory and I’m at peace about it. After all, I consider myself an alien—why should I take up a dispute regarding the planet’s collective mindset. It is what it is and there are more important things to be concerned about…like salvation.
We danced around the tolerance issue a little more, but then I asked a question that ended our conversation.
“By whose authority do you speak?”
She asked what I meant.
I told her that in our zeal for our respective religious positions, we were both guilty of lovingly throwing around language that was absolute. I used one of her phrases, “pluralism in religious faith is necessary,” as an example. I pointed out that the use of the word ‘necessary’ was exclusionary as it implied that her remark was absolutely correct and my remark was not. For the record I wasn’t objecting to her remark or even her right to say it.
To clarify I told her that God was my authority. Oh not that God had specifically ordained me to say the things that I was saying, but rather that the words were His, that they’re found in the Holy Bible, and I was merely repeating them (or paraphrasing them as it were). In other words, what I was sharing was not a personal philosophy, tradition, or contemplation.
After my explanation, the conversation ceased and I have not heard from her since. Why? I suspect she realized that her authority was her own and that she had been sharing from her heart what she believed and what was relevant to her–She had in fact created for herself a religion that best suited her needs. The Book of Romans describes her behavior:
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man–and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. Romans 1:18-23
Look around. God is obvious and to deny Him is to declare that you are wiser than Him. Currently there are over four billion people roaming this planet that do just that—they proclaim supreme authority over themselves. Professing to be wise, four billion people are playing god while simultaneously playing the fool. I spoke to one of them today.
I don’t say that mockingly or even condemningly—I pray that this lady will come to understand that there is only One Authority, not billions and that she would wisely submit herself to Him. Honestly, how can we make sense of this world or our lives when there are billions of us who believe that we know better than God? Our God is not a God of confusion and probably the main reason why there is only one of Him.
These ramblings are typically (but not always) a byproduct inspired by God through my personal Bible study at SearchLight with Pastor Jon Courson and with my pastor at my home church, Calvary Chapel Coastlands