How many times I have heard, “But God gave us a brain.” Which, of course is true but underlying that statement, I believe is the problem of logic. How often when we choose to do the logical thing do we forgo doing the faith thing?
I can think of many, many Biblical examples of this tension.
Sarah chose the logical thing when she sent Hagar to Abraham so that they could conceive an heir. (Genesis 16)
Abraham chose the logical thing when he told Abimelech that Sarah was his sister. (Genesis 20)
The 12 spies Moses sent into Canaan from Kadesh-Barnea (Numbers 13) chose the logical thing when 10 of the 12 spies reported that because of the giants in the land they could not go in to take possession of the land God promised.
The 2 ½ tribes of Reuben, Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh chose the logical thing to settle east of the Jordan rather than to cross over and enter the Promise Land – because in their eyes, the land was good for their many flocks. (Genesis 32)
Israel chose the logical thing when they asked for a king – like all the other nations (1 Samuel 8)
There are many, many more examples. None of these examples appear in the Hall of Faith chapter of Hebrews 11 – Some of these people are listed there but the writer of Hebrews used other illustrations of their faith.
I was recently reading Luke 5 of the story of Jesus calling His first disciples. If you recall Jesus was near Lake Gennesaret where two fishing boats had returned from a fruitless morning of fishing, the fishermen were cleaning their nets. Because of the crowd Jesus got into Simon’s boat and asked him to “put out a little from the land.” Jesus sat down and taught the people from the boat.
“And when he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, ‘Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.’ And Simon answered, ‘Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word, I will let down the nets.’” (Vs. 4-5) (Underline added)
I have read this many times over my 35 years as a Christian, but on this day my eyes lingered on “but at your word.” How many times have we/I logic-ed our way through, around, under, over or past “His word”? Those times we have been prompted by the Spirit of God to say or do something or perhaps not do something but it didn’t seem like a logical course of action. We have reasons why our course of action “makes more sense.” Silly right? But I think it happens a lot. I definitely see it in my own life.
What did Simon do? He let down the nets even though they had fished all night and caught nothing. “And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink.” (Vs. 6-7)
There are many Biblical illustrations of people doing the “logical” thing but there are also many Biblical illustrations of people stepping out in faith taking God “at His word.”
Noah built an ark though it had never rained (Genesis 6-7). Logical? No.
Abraham took Isaac to the place of sacrifice which made no logical sense what-so-ever since Isaac was the promised heir (Genesis 22). Logical? No.
The people of Israel marched around Jericho 7 times (Genesis 6). Logical? No.
Naaman submerged himself 7 times in the Jordan (2 Kings 5:14). Logical? No.
David took 5 smooth stones and a sling shot to take out Goliath (1 Samuel 17). Logical? No.
How often have we forgone seeing God’s hand at work because we chose the logical thing rather than to step out in faith?
Which will we chose? Logic or faith? There is surely a place for our human intellect and human logic. Please don’t misunderstand me. I am not saying there is not a place for using our brains. But may we never let it stand up against the faith response of hearing and obeying God’s word.
The moral of this Victory Call is this: FAITH TRIUMPHS OVER LOGIC.
Written by Diane Hunt: Diane Hunt serves on the board of America’s Keswick and is the Executive Director & CEO of Changed Choices, a Christian non-profit in North Carolina. She is also a biblical counselor and women’s event speaker. For more information about having Diane speak at your next event please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Think About This: “If weakness may excuse, what murder, what traitor, parricide, incestuous, sacrilegious, but may plead I? All wickedness is weakness.” – Samson Agonistes