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Do we have to know everything before we can believe in God?

Think Christianly: Do we have to know everything before we can believe in God?

Monday, April 20, 2009

Do we have to know everything before we can believe in God?

I spoke to our church this weekend about questions, doubts, and faith. I wanted to share two quotes that I found helpful.

First, “Faith does not feed on thin air but on facts. Its instinct is to root itself in truth, to earth itself in reality, and this distinguishes faith from fantasy, the object of faith from the figment of the imagination.”—Os Guinness

There is a lot of confusion about faith today. But from a Christian perspective, I think Os hits the nail on the head. Faith is rooted in reality. A better synonym would be trust or confidence. Faith is not wishful thinking, it is grounded in experience and evidence.

Second, “There is no way to God that bypasses the call to let go {i.e., to choose to trust Him}. You may have many intellectual doubts, and it is really important to be honest about those, to talk about them and study. However, thinking and studying alone never remove the need to choose. The question of faith is never just an intellectual decision”—John Ortberg

As humans, we all have limitations. We have limitations in energy, time, and yes…knowledge. We all experience doubts at one time or another simply because we cannot know everything about everything. That is equally true of the skeptic and believer. But there comes a time when you have to choose. Everyone ultimately trusts in something or someone--themselves, a friend, a book, a professor, or God. And we all do so--without every question answered. We do our best to have sufficient evidence, but at the end of the day we either commit to the person of Jesus and his way of life or choose another path. Yes, there will be questions along the way, but that is why it is a journey of faith and understanding.

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