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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Faith or Wishful Thinking

What is the difference between faith and wishful thinking? Someone said to me regarding a specific desired outcome to a problem, "let's trust God that this will happen."

Now that would have been good and pious if he'd meant, "I don't know what will happen, but I believe that God is good and He will work it all out for the best." But that is not what this person meant. The rest of his conversation made it clear that he was saying, "I want this to be resolved in this particular way. I will put my faith in God that he will resolve it in this very manner."

It's like someone saying, I have cancer and I am going to trust God to heal me. Or I want this thing so I'm going to pay for it, even though I can't afford it. I will trust God to make my ends meet for me.

Faith can only exist where there has first been a specific promise. If you can show me that God has promised unequivocally to heal you of your malady in this lifetime, then you can trust him for that. Otherwise, it is wishful thinking.

We can't use faith to excuse us from being responsible beings. God does not promise to pay your credit card bills or remove every disease in this lifetime. So many times people simply project their wants and desire on God and make him responsible for them. And then when things don't happen as hoped, they get hurt and upset with God.

Remember this: Faith requires a promise. You cannot get mad at God for not doing things which He has never promised to do.

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Carl said...

Your post reminds me of the comment
by "Bishop Schorri" to the tune of
God will bless what we in the Episcopal church decide. Just heard it on the Monday Issues Etc
program. btw, Wilken does an masterful job at refuting such claims! A program that should be widely disseminated!!

Steve said...

Excellent's not faith without a promise.

I'm not a Lutheran, but I've been reading your blog. Glad to know ya.


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