Because God Said So


Some of you may have heard of Andy Stanley. He is the senior pastor of North Point Community Church and several satellite congregations. Lately, he has caused some controversy by insisting that preachers need to change their approach to reaching post-Christian people. He describes them as someone who “has been there, done that, and has a closetful of camp T-shirts to show for it.”

Post-Christians are said to rely on their own common sense, science, philosophy, and reason when determining their worldview and making decisions. Stanley says, “Close to half our population does not view the Bible as authoritative either. If you’re trying to reach people with an undergraduate degree or greater, over half your target audience will not be moved by the Bible says, the Bible teaches, God’s Word is clear or anything along those lines.”

Obviously, Andy Stanley has lots more to say on this subject, and I will leave you to do more research on your own if you want to know more. Others have come out both in favor and opposing what he is saying. To put it simply, he is saying that “because the Bible says so” is not good enough for some “Christians” today. They no longer view the Scriptures as being true and without error in everything it affirms.

My take is different than most who disagree with him. The core problem is not that post-Christians view the Scriptures differently, but they conceive of God differently. It is their view of God that changes their view of the Bible.

Let me explain it this way. Growing up when I would question a rule or decision my father had made, his answer was often “because I said so.” He never felt compelled to explain the thinking behind his decision. He believes that “I said so” should have been sufficient for me. Now I think he was presuming that our relationship was better than it actually was. He assumed I knew he loved me and was looking for my best interests.

Here is where I think the post-Christians make their mistake. If I believe in a God who is both perfect in knowledge and love, how can I NOT trust what His Word says to me? How can I separate God from God’s Word? If I cannot trust WHAT God says, how can I trust Him? The flaw is not in the Scriptures, but in their Theology (The Study of God).

When the Bible clearly says something that contracts their “common sense, science, philosophy and reason”, they are not simply choosing to reject the Bible. They are rejecting God in favor of their other gods. It is their worldview that is wrong, not the Scriptures. As with all gods, they don’t stand up to true scrutiny. There is no real absolute truth, only their own “personal truth”.

This is nothing new. The devil used this ploy in Genesis when he was tempting Eve. “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden?” He knew that if he could plant that seed of doubt about what God said, she would be more likely to sin. To question God’s Word is to question the character of God Himself.

Paul said it best when he wrote, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.”(Romans 10:17) He also believes in the total sufficiency of the Scriptures, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (1 Timothy 3:16,17)

Let me conclude with this illustration. As most of you know, a few years ago, I was responsible for transporting Miss Nimmer to her speaking engagements around the state of Indiana for nearly a year. We were traveling to places I had never been before. During that time, I relied on and came to trust my GPS. Not once were we late or lost or in the wrong place. It helped me to avoid accidents and backups on the highway and always provided the best, fastest route.

God’s Perfect Scriptures are the GPS of the Christian life. When you rely on them for your worldview and understanding of God, you will never be lost or confused or misdirected. There will be voices that will whisper to you that you should listen more to “science” or “philosophy” than to God’s Word. Don’t listen and stay true to Scriptures. You might not always understand, but trust God said so for good reason!

See You Sunday,