As I was praying this morning (8/26/16) I was impressed with the thought that we humans really are too smart for our own good – especially we modern day Americans. I was made aware of how many times my response to statements of faith is; “Yeah but”. I’m not alone in this because I first started thinking about it when I heard you say it to me. Then, as I considered the repercussions of such a statement, I recognized its attitude in myself. As part of my prayer time, I read something that fit, that sharpened the reality of what was pressing on my soul.
A man named Dallas Willard wrote that there is a very real power of God transmitted in the laying on of hands by the redeemed. He writes that even though the Holy Scripture points to such a reality in the early church,“We have so little experience of or so little teaching about such things. And in a world of naturalistic outlook, where secularism takes many guises and even penetrates deeply into the substance of the “church visible,” some will go to great lengths to explain away such manifestations—or at least to explain why they have nothing to do with us.” In other words, he says that we have this way of responding to the words of faith with a “Yeah but”.
This response is across the board too: Christians and non-Christians alike.
Non-Christians are often "too smart" to accept the faith of the resurrected Jesus while the modern American Christian very often will accept the faith, but live out a faith with a complex parenthetical statement.
I’m often guilty of the “Yeah but” response to discussions of faith. I believe that my education in the scriptures has hurt me because, after I learned how to translate and dissect them in order to find the exegetical and hermeneutical interpretations, I lost the ability to simply accept my lord’s instruction to “Love thy neighbor as thy self.” I think maybe that is why the Sunday sermon has so often become a 50 minute college lecture rather than a simple encouragement to "go and do likewise".
So, when you hear the words of faith, how do you respond? With the response of pure faith or with a “Yeah but”?
John 14:6 -- Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Mark 11:24-25 -- Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”
Now, by the power of the Holy Spirit and the faith of Christ I bid you to, go and do likewise…