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Do we really trust in God?

By Jim Killebrew

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[April 14, 2014]  The other day I received one of those emails that repeated information from some purported study that had been done in the United States after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist incident that reported that 86 percent of Americans believed in God. In fact, the "studies" or recent polls taken substantiate that a high percentage of Americans admit to trusting in God. We even print "In God We Trust" on our currency.

Actually, we likely do trust in God; it is just that we may not all have the same definition of God. The problem is that it may be only an intellectual trust and not an experiential trust. It is true that many people would respond by saying yes if asked if they trust in God, especially if the question is coupled with a second question about our keeping "In God We Trust" on our currency.

I wonder how many of those same people have been able to successfully compartmentalize God into a small segment of their lives. Trusting in God may even be a politically correct thing to do in some places, but only to the extent that has been defined by the social norms of that regional location. Perhaps to some people God is a "Being" that they have actually put under their own control:  the little old man with a long white beard who sits on a big golden throne in heaven. When their lives are running smoothly, many of those people who "trust" in God would hardly have the time of day for Him. They have taken a concept and have "reified" it into something more concrete that they can manage, and certainly not be bothered by.

I wonder if rather than asking the average American if he or she trusts God, we should ask the following question:

Do you believe in the God of the universe Who created everything that is, was and ever will be;

The God who spoke into existence through His Son Jesus the entire universe and presented our world to mankind;

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The God Who has given His grace to each of us because we are sinners and have been separated from Him;

The God Who has provided the only way back to Himself by sending His Son Jesus to shed His blood on the cross and provide forgiveness of our sins;

The God Who demands your loyalty, respect and worship;

The God Who demands that through your worship and love to Him, you denounce all sin around you and follow Him completely by yielding your entire life to Him so that He may have the honor and glory as He personally works His will through you; and finally,

The God Who will return again with glory and power and judge you and your life against the shed blood of His only-begotten Son, Jesus?

I wonder if there will still be 86 percent of the Americans who will answer yes.


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