They called on the name of Baal from morning until noon, shouting, “O Baal, answer us!” But there was no voice; no one answered.
1 Kings 18:26
Different roads can lead us to the same town and many believe that all religions lead to the same God. Our generation has made a breathtaking transition in thinking. In the past, people thought you could be right about what you believed, or you could be wrong. But something wasn’t true because you believed it.
All that has now changed. Today, vast multitudes think that, if you believe something, and believe it sincerely, then it’s true. Why? Because you believe it.
Brian Tracy, a leader of the Positive Thinking movement teaches that, if you are on a crowded street looking for an empty parking space, and you believe strongly enough, you will always find that a vacant parking space has been created for you.
In this same vein, we don’t bother so much with asking whether our beliefs in God are true; the only thing that matters is that we have a sincere faith.
Last week, I used a cup of cold coffee to disprove this notion.
Early, on a chilly morning in the mountains, I grabbed a cup of coffee and drove down the road to the old Pinkham schoolhouse. The day turned into a scorcher and, by late afternoon, everyone had opened the windows to their vehicles to cool them down.
When it was time to go home, I climbed in my pickup and noticed I hadn’t finished my coffee so I picked up the cup and threw the cold coffee out the window.
I thought the window was open, but it wasn’t. The cup banged against the window and sent a shower of cold coffee my way.
If you ever want to feel really stupid . . .
Now, I sincerely believed that the window on my pickup was rolled down. I sincerely believed that I could fling the cold coffee outside and life would be better for my having done so.
Sadly, my faith could not create truth. If faith made things true, I wouldn’t have had sore knuckles and coffee dripping from my face.
On Mount Carmel, Elijah challenged the prophets of Baal to a contest. Whoever could pray to their God to miraculously light the sacrifice on the altar would be acknowledged as serving the true God. Back then, everyone agreed that faith was useless unless it was placed in the truth.
In the old days, they wouldn’t scratch their heads and wonder why my faith didn’t create an open window on my pickup; they would be looking at my soppy face and laughing until their stomachs hurt.
(copyright 2012 by climbinghigher.org and by Marty Kaarre)