Thursday, September 18, 2008

I need to put a laptop in my bedroom. I think of the best blog topics right before sleep every night. Well, not every night, but many nights I think of something fun to write about. The next morning? Can't remember a thing.

Yesterday, however, I had a conversation with a friend about asking God "Why?". Here are some thoughts I have had regarding "Why?"

1. Asking God "Why" assumes you will be able to understand His answer
2. If you can understand "why", then you can understand the mind of God
3. If you can understand the mind of God, then you are not human
4. If you are not human, you don't need to ask the question "Why"

Basically, asking questions of God assumes that you can grasp concepts from the infinite mind of God with your finite mind.

I'm not saying it's wrong to ask "why". I do think it is unreasonable and we set ourselves up for disappointment. A three year old misses Daddy who is fighting in Iraq and asks Mommy why Daddy cannot come home. The mom can explain why, but the child is not equipped to understand the answer. That is a really poor example, but it reflects my perspective on asking God questions. I believe that God truly wants to tell us answers to many of the "whys" of life because He gave us the bible. The bible is His answer to our questions and the origination of many of our questions. The problem is when we read the bible and say, "Ok, now I want to know more." Well. We cannot understand "more". We cannot even understand the totality of the bible.

Take the issue of unconditional election, predestination, foreknowledge versus man's free will. Who on earth can explain the existence of these being true at the same time? I haven't heard anyone truly explain it without taking scripture out of context or applying a different meaning to the scripture. God says He foreknew, called, elected and predestined some for eternal life. We can wonder. We can guess. We cannot fathom how they can both exist at the same time, yet they do both exist. See below, noting that the emphasis is mine:

Romans 8:28-30 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. "

Acts 13:48 "When the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord; and as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed."

Ephesians 1. Just read the whole chapter, but focus on the following verses:

"For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. ... In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory."

These scriptures must be taken seriously. We cannot explain them away. Yet, it is unfathomable how God allows us free will and at the same time has appointed some for eternal life and others for damnation.

In the end, we can ask God "Why" for any question we have, but we must remember 2 Cor 4:17-18
"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."

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