Faith or Commonsense?

“Without faith it is impossible to please HimHebrews 11:6

How often do we hear that something is ‘just commonsense’? The fact that we hear it so often reveals that it isn’t all that common. We sometimes hear the term in relation to the Christian life as well. With the 57 varieties of ‘Christian’ in the world these days what we may think should be common Christian thinking isn’t so common.

The fact is that commonsense is not faith and faith is not commonsense. Jesus referred to the Israelites that had been bitten by poisonous snakes in John 3:14. The account in Numbers 21:4-9 reveals that they could be cured by simply looking at a pole with a brass serpent attached to one end. That was not commonsense but it was an act of faith. “Commonsense and faith stand in the relation of the natural and the spiritual; of impulse and inspiration” writes Oswald Chambers.

We must be careful not to apply what seems to be commonsense in the world, without considering God and His Word, to our spiritual life. From time to time God will ask us to do (or not do) that which defies commonsense to test our faith in Him (as He did with Abraham) but also to accomplish His purpose.

The just shall live by faith we are told and faith and common sense run directly against each other. We will either let one rule our lives or the other but never both.

Faith puts Jesus Christ and His Word first (God’s wisdom). Commonsense puts my knowledge and ability to reason first (man’s wisdom). It is for us to choose.

God will bring us into circumstances requiring actions of faith in order to educate our faith and destroy commonsense. Faith is the whole person rightly related to God by the power of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. Faith is taking God at His word and living according to it even when I don’t see the outcome as being beneficial.

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