The Guide to All Truth

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Wednesday, December 2, 2015 0 comments

by Logan Ames

One of the questions I get asked pretty often when I’m engaged in discussions with people who are facing challenging decisions is, “How am I supposed to figure out what God wants me to do?” Probably second on that list of most-asked questions would be, “Is it okay for me to (fill in the blank) and still be a Christian?” I get asked these questions both as a pastor of a church and as a believer at a separate place of employment where many are either not believers at all or are very young in their faith.

I remember when I was much younger and I had similar questions. I would go to my pastor expecting a concrete answer and he would just look at me and say, “Well Logan, what’s God telling you about this situation?” I really used to hate that! However, it was usually the right question. Think about how many times Jesus gave an answer versus how many times he asked a question in the Gospels. If you counted, the numbers would probably really surprise you. That being said, neither my pastor nor any other mentor in my life would hesitate to answer a question that was firmly established in Scripture. Let’s face it, though. There are many more gray areas of our faith that are not addressed in Scripture than concrete rules and laws according to God’s Word. This means that we must have another way to answer those questions.

Like my pastor would say, it comes down to knowing what the Lord is saying to us. After all, how can we expect to get an answer from a pastor or “Biblical scholar” if we aren’t first asking the One who truly does have ALL the answers? For the past month, several of us blog writers here at Worldview Warriors have been taking you through Romans 14, where Paul addresses the handling of “disputable matters” with other believers. As he concludes his thoughts on those matters in verses 19-23, he reinforces the need for believers to bear with one another and to make mutual peace within the body of Christ the number one priority. He commands the believers, “Don’t destroy the work of God for the sake of food” (verse 20). “Food” in that sentence could refer to anything that we choose to accept that is disputable and could cause someone else to stumble. Paul says that love for a brother or sister in Christ is most important, so it’s better to avoid those things altogether rather than cause someone to stumble.

Once he has established that we have a responsibility to make sure we don’t cause someone else to stumble, Paul turns his attention to how we should view disputable matters as they relate to our own lives. He again tells us that our beliefs about the gray areas of our faith are between us and God. We have freedom, also known as Christian liberty, but Paul adds that we are only blessed in that freedom if we do not “condemn ourselves” by what we eat or accept (verse 22). You might ask how we could possibly condemn ourselves; Paul answers that too. He stated we are condemned when we have doubts about what we are doing and still go forward with it anyway. In other words, restraint is always better unless you are CERTAIN that God has approved of you participating in the activity or accepting the disputable thing into your life. Paul says that our decisions on these things must come from faith, because “everything that does not come from faith is sin” (verse 23). No exceptions. If God has not granted you the freedom in a certain area and you move forward anyway, it’s sin.

Logic would obviously dictate that you cannot know how God feels about something in your life unless you are concerned enough to ask him. So let me ask you, does it matter to you how God feels about what you’re doing in your life? If not, I’d question exactly what difference he is making for you and how you know you are his child. If it does matter, then take Paul’s advice and seek the Lord. If you still have doubts and are questioning whether you should accept something in your life that your flesh desires after you have sought the Lord, then there is a good chance you should abstain.

Like my pastor growing up, I would ask you what the Lord is saying to you about those gray areas. Before Jesus left this earth, he shared with his immediate followers that the Father would send them the Holy Spirit to guide them. He promised that “when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth” (John 16:13). You see, Jesus knew that the Bible wasn’t going to cover every single area of life that you might ever have a question about. Jesus’ immediate followers were able to ask him directly just about anytime they had a question. But for you and I and for all believers who have come after the Lord was already gone from the earth, we were given the Holy Spirit to guide us and answer any question we have.

If you are struggling with many questions regarding what the Lord wants for your life, I encourage you to invest in a relationship with him like never before. He is the Spirit that will guide you into ALL truth. You can get to know the Lord and that is what he desires with you. There will be times that he will give you the freedom to accept certain things in your life that others might not have the freedom to accept, and vice versa. Be aware of those times where you could cause another to stumble, and always be sure you are not condemning yourself before the Lord. He might not completely ban something from your life, but may ask you to wait. If you have doubts, just keep asking him to clarify HIS position for you. It’s the only one that matters, and eventually he’ll make himself clear.

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.