Failing Faith (inaugural official post by the man of the house)

Of Israel’s request for a king in the days of Samuel, Alec Motyer writes (emphasis added)

“….the request for a king arose from the failure of faith. The strain of living without visible means of security was more than the people could any longer endure. Notwithstanding that the Lord had always proved reliable, they were not strong enough in trust to face seen dangers whilst looking to the unseen.” 1

It seems to me that ancient Israel are not the only people who struggle with such failures of faith resulting in misplaced faith, or in a never-ending pursuit of something, or someone reliable enough to trust in, something or someone who can give us peace of mind, comfort or assurance. The pursuit is legitimate  and unavoidable, the widespread search is not. Even as Christians we seem to have a hard time resting in God’s promises, trusting in His essential nature of love towards His people, we too often find ourselves looking for something tangible to believe in, and being unable to be at peace unless there is some such thing to comfort us – as if the love and care of our Creator God isn’t enough. Sometimes we disguise such lack of faith as prudence, as carefulness, as diligence, in Cromwellian fashion ‘keeping our powder dry’2, but in reality it’s just old-fashioned ‘failure of faith’. Perhaps a good start to the 2012 would be to give ourselves a good shake and start believing, really believing that God is good to those who fear Him.

Psalm 37:22-27   22 For those blessed by Him shall inherit the earth, But those cursed by Him shall be cut off.  23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD, And He delights in his way.  24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the LORD upholds him with His hand.  25 I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread.  26 He is ever merciful, and lends; And his descendants are blessed.  27 Depart from evil, and do good; And dwell forevermore.

1Alec Motyer, Look to the Rock (Leicester:IVP, 1996), 27-28
2 See here for the story


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