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FIRST-PERSON: Knowing the most but trusting the least

MELISSA, Texas (BP)–Too often, as our knowledge of God grows, our dependence upon Him decreases. Kind of depressing, isn’t it? As we learn the facts about God, we tend to lose the faith in God.

How sad to think that we allow ourselves to become familiar with, used to, even bored with, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Is it possible that we would rather explore the latest technological advances instead of the infallible Word of God? Am I more fascinated with the splendor of creation than the majesty of the Creator? Can we actually know so much about God that the supernatural becomes commonplace and the divine get dismissed? Our generation may indeed have more knowledge about the universe, and less interest in its Maker, than any generation in human history.

The temptation to look past God is not a new one, however. Look at Simon Peter. No one spent more time on earth with Jesus than this Galilean fisherman. No one witnessed more miracles or saw more lives changed. Have we forgotten that Peter also walked on the water with Jesus? Yet Peter denied Christ when He needed His disciple the most. Eye-witness experience didn’t necessarily bring about faithful obedience.

Abraham, called by James “the friend of God”, received untold blessing and honor from God through His covenant. Unfortunately, even the father of many nations, when pressured by foreigners, denied that Sarah was his wife.

Remember that the Pharisees, who all held doctorates in the Mosaic Law, killed the Son of God enabling Him to become the Lamb of God.

Even Adam and Eve, who actually walked and talked with God Almighty, who were given the entire world to enjoy, still chose to disobey the One who had given them life.

Today, some of us feel confident to depend upon our knowledge of the intricacies of the universe for our success in this life and also the life to come. We have decided that we need no outside help, especially from the God who, though He created us in His own image, doesn’t seem to really understand the pressures and requirements of life in the 21st Century.

Why do those who know the most trust the least? Why does information preclude inspiration? Why do facts blur our faith? How can going to church hinder us from going to God in prayer?

May we be like that woman at the well who understood no theology, who had memorized no Bible verses, who had never even been to Sunday School. All this lady knew was that she met a man named Jesus who touched her life like no one else had and she asked with a child-like faith, “Is this not the Christ?”

I wonder when in life men shift from a sense of helplessness to a sense of accomplishment, when the very blessings given us by God cause us to forget the One who gives them. I wonder when we learn to depend upon ourselves rather than the Lord Jesus Christ, the One in whom all things consist.

Why do those who possess the most piety demonstrate the least dedication? Why does knowing about God keep me from actually knowing God? When do I decide to trust in my strength rather than the One who gives me that strength?

Max Lucado stated this dilemma eloquently when he wrote, “The loss of mystery has led to the loss of majesty. The more we know, the less we believe. No wonder there is no wonder. We think we’ve figured it all out. Strange, don’t you think? Knowledge of the workings shouldn’t negate wonder. Knowledge should stir wonder. Who has more reason to worship than the astronomer who has seen the stars? Than the surgeon who has held a heart? Than the oceanographer who has pondered the depths?”

My prayer is that we will know God better than ever, and through that knowledge, learn to trust Him more than ever.

Dear God, while I learn and grow, never stop showing me that though facts are important, what I really need is You.
Trey Graham, a writer, speaker and the senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Melissa, Texas, is the author of “Lessons for the Journey” (America House, 2001) and “Light for the Journey” (PublishAmerica, 2004). He can be reached at [email protected].

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  • Trey Graham