A Cure for Distrust

“Every time I deliberately disobey a command of God, it is because I am in that moment doubtful as to God’s true intentions in giving me that command. Does He really have my best interests at heart? Or is He withholding something from me that I would be better off having? Such questions, whether consciously asked or not, lie under every act of disobedience.
However, the gospel changes my view of God’s commandments, in that it helps me to see the heart of the Person from whom those commandments come. When I begin my train of thought with the gospel, I realize that if God loved me enough to sacrifice His Son’s life for me, then He must be guided by that same love when He speaks His commandments to me. Viewing God’s commands and prohibitions in this light, I can see them for what they really are: friendly signposts from a Heavenly Father who is seeking to love me through each directive so that I might experience His very fullness forever.
When controlling my thoughts as described above, the gospel cures me of my suspicion of God, thereby disposing me to walk more trustingly on the path of obedience to His commands”
Milton Vincent, A Gospel Primer for Christians

The first time I read this passage I had to stop and read it over again, and then again, and then pray over it, and then read it again. What an odd idea, that when I disobey God I am in fact saying that I do not trust Him. If anyone was to ask me, even on my worst day I would say that I trusted God completely! And yet my actions often prove otherwise.

When looked at the commands of scripture through the eyes of logic only, they appear to be good! For what good has ever come to a person by lying or by cheating or by having an affair, or by characterizing laziness? It may seem good for the moment but there are always long-term consequences. God, being the only Person completely holy, separate from sin, realizes this fact in its fullness for although each of these has long-term consequences here on Earth, there are much bigger consequences: death and hell apart from His saving grace. And in love He gives us commands to protect us.

Just as parents will forbid their child from touching the stove or playing in the street, not because they are gleefully keeping a great pleasure from their child but because they are protecting her, so God has given certain commands to His children.

At the humans’ most fundamental level, we rebel against any restrictions placed on us. We immediately assume that something is being withheld from us. We become suspicious and curious about what we are “missing.” Since this is a natural part of the humans’ condition, it becomes necessary for us to fight it with the one thing more powerful – the gospel.

Romans 8:32 “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”

The amount of love that God showed us in the sacrifice of His Son was so great that we should automatically assume that every act from Him to us after this is done in love and for our best.

John 15:12-13 “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.”

So the next time we are tempted by sin and begin to wonder what that particular sin is like and start to justify experiencing it in our minds, let us immediately call to mind the truth of the gospel. Let us remember the great love shown to us at Calvary and realize that the wisdom of God far outweighs the wisdom of man (for which of us could have looked at the brutal act of Calvary and declared it to be good and beautiful apart from the grace of God?)

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