Saturday, March 21, 2009


I have been really slacking on two post series that i started (one on Peter Enns book and the other one on Virgin Birth). Sometimes you do something and the emotional pull of things that happen around you hits like a wave. At these times I'm pretty glad that i could still gather some thoughts here and there. If I'm lucky, i can think straight and come up with some worthy thinking on a post, well at least worthy to me that is.

Stuck in a rut at the moment and it really is draining my energy. Sometimes i wonder how Abraham does it. His walk of faith is remarkable not to mention the strain of years. I'm reading through Eugene Peterson's "The Jesus Way" and the chapter on Abraham is pretty amazing (although i had trouble reading the chapter on Moses. Really messed with my head. Anyone read the book? I could use your insights here.).

Let me quote some profound stuff that I read on Abraham chapter

"Untested faith does not yet qualify for faith." (57)

"The test is the catalyst in which our response to god, the raw material of faith, is formed into a life of faith. Or not. If the test dissolves whatever we were calling faith into romanticized sludge or pietistic ooze, we are blessedly rid of what will dissipate our life in self-deception."(57)

In other words, faith to be faith must be tested to examine the quality. Testings purify or more likely, sheds the unnecessary ounces that we gather to be faith. I really like what is said here. But it is another thing if we are to embody this sort of thinking. I would add another thing though. Maturity in faith is spelled 'Trust'. After all the sacrifices and testing going on and purging faith, or what you though faith was, the refines fire works through and yields a life of trust. Sometimes there is a slight wish that mature faith or trust to yield its fruit in an instant. I would like it that way. Wouldn't all of us?

The road from infant faith to maturity in faith is laden with sacrifices and testings, the things that happen in the in between of life. But yet, after we have arrived to maturity in faith, we stary another journey again. The only difference is we dont really have to struggle between the goads too much.

At the end of the chapeter Peterson brings up this line

Lk 22:42 “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”

My initial response now would be, "Lord increase my faith." But I know he would just say, "It's not about me increasing your faith, it's about you discovering it." I'd like to think that's what he would say.


Mason said...

"faith to be faith must be tested"

Very well said. It's easy to act like you have this incredible faith, or even believe it yourself, when things are going well. When things are hard and you have a hard time seeing where God could possibly be in a situation, then the quality of our faith is revealed.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Good thoughts. Yes, I've read that book. It has been awhile back.

Peterson's books are best read slow and more than once, I would say.

Thanks for the great reminders from it on Abraham. I just glanced in it on Moses, and looks rich there as well. Peterson is the kind of writer that if you put it aside for a time, you'll probably get more out of it, each new time you read it.

Tremonti said...

I think it keeps us sober and alert always concerning what we believe. It's junctures of tests that reveal what it is we believe, how our faith actually looks like. I like to think the walk of faith in this manner because it is always a learning experience.

Yes, you are absolutely right. One of my college lecture also said the same thing about reading Peterson. He has a way of always captivating our thoughts every single time.

Hopeful Theo

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