Why do people argue with the truths of God?

Monday Musings for October 21, 2019

Good morning, Musers,

Today’s question sort of knocked me back on my heels. You see, my job in the kingdom is to explain things. That is, I strive to help people find a way forward in faith when the word, the world or philosophy trips them up. But today’s questioner challenged that whole process by asking, why doesn’t everyone just believe God? Why do we argue when God’s truth is so apparent?

Well… there’s a problem. God’s truth is not apparent — not to everyone at every moment anyway… and I suspect you see this.

Now, God’s word says that it’s plain. Paul says in Romans 1:18-20 that God’s power and deity are plainly revealed for all to see. We also learn that God holds everyone responsible for that revelation… and that the reason people don’t see it is that they are wicked and they suppress God’s truth.

My assumption is that this will be a line-item for those people on judgment day. But in the meantime, we have an epistemological conundrum: because some people suppressed the truth, they don’t know the truth… yet they are still responsible for it.

Fortunately, time works in their favor here. I was one of those until God broke through… but my example is not exactly parallel. I was already a panentheist (which is a theist), and that Romans passage holds people responsible for theism… but not for Christian theism in particular.

Now, those of us who know God “know” that what he reveals is true… or that’s the orthodox view of his revelation anyway. The problem is, this can manifest in a, “If I understand this then everyone should understand this!” fallacy… and we all go there once in a while… and with some justification based on how God does things.

For instance, I know that God has given me the grace to “know” the things that I know… or else I’d just be like the lesser beasts. But it’s also true that there’s a handshake involved — just like at salvation: God did his thing… and we must do ours.

So, In spite of the way he provided for us with his word, the universe, our brains and our consciences, progressing in the knowledge of God still requires that we will to do so and that we are diligent in doing so… and that’s on us.

Therefore, it’s not so much that we shake God’s hand; it’s that we continually do so. After all, his grace and his provision for us are constant. Why shouldn’t our faith be the same? But remember, faith is not just agreeing with God. Faith is doing for God. Faith should manifest in doing the works he’s called us to do in his kingdom.

“What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them?” (James 2:14, NIV)

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