Friday, August 19, 2011

Pride vs. Faith

"Behold, as for the proud one, his soul is not right within him;
But the righteous will live by faith."
Habakkuk 2:4

When David penned the words, "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path," he was describing the illuminating strength of the above lamp and compared it to God's word. Not impressed? Well, as a shepherd living a few thousand years ago, an oil lamp was highly valued to light the way on moonless nights. All he needed was to see one step in front of him and he felt safe. In the pitch dark - that's when it gets scary.

I start this way because I was thinking about this verse from Habakkuk today and the call of the righteous to live by faith. Christianity is a faith based religion. There's no way around it. We cannot see God, we weren't at the creation of the world, we didn't see Jesus raise from the dead and we can't see the Holy Spirit.

By faith, we have to believe what the Word of God tells us. It's a humbling thing to walk by faith and not by sight. The proud one walks by sight and can figure everything out himself. That's why he's so proud, but according to God's word, his soul is not right within him. Why? Well, he can't see his soul so he doesn't see his need.

But the humble man sees his soul through the eyes of God. By faith, he believes that his heart is deceitful and desperately sick. He believes that he is a walking dead man. He believes that God exists and not only wants a relationship with man, but provided the Way to save mankind.

But all these things must be acted on in faith. That's why my mind went to the oil lamp. Oh, how often I wish the Lord would just hit the light switch and light up the path of my life, so that I understood every step from here to eternity! Wouldn't that be nice? But that's not the way He does it. He wants us to be dependent on Him. He wants us to walk in humility, trusting Him for the next step. And we get that guidance from His Word - it is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path.

So what does this boil down to today? I guess my questions to you are:
  • Do you trust that the Word of God is truly what it claims to be?
  • Do you walk by faith, acting on the Word?
  • Does the Bible truly affect your life?
  • Are you willing to humble yourself and do it God's way, by faith, without understanding or seeing the whole picture?
  • Or do you have doubts that the Bible is truly His Word?
I love this quote on the inerrancy of the Bible from Charles Spurgeon, a British Baptist pastor from the 1800's:

I do not believe that, from one cover to the other, there is any mistake in it of any sort whatever, either upon natural or physical science, or upon history or anything whatever. I am prepared to believe whatever it says, and to take it believing it to be the Word of God; for if it is not all true, it is not worth one solitary penny to me. It may be to the man who is so wise that he can pick out the true from the false; but I am such a fool that I could not do that. If I do not have a guide there that is infallible, I would as soon guide myself, for I shall have to do so after all; I shall have to be correcting the blunders of my guide perpetually, but I am not qualified to do that, and so I am worse off than if I had not any guide at all. Sit thou down, Reason, and let Faith rise up.

Are you willing to have faith like that?

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