Have you ever hesitated before questioning a sermon, a scriptural passage, or a teaching? Have you ever felt that it's unfaithful to have doubts or disagreements with God? In a culture where obedience is synonymous with silent acceptance, it's essential to remember that the core of Christianity is built on questioning, wrestling, and sometimes even disagreeing with God.
1. The Biblical Precedence of Wrestling with God
The notion that humans can wrestle with God is as old as the Scriptures themselves. Remember Jacob in the Old Testament? He physically wrestled with God through the night (Genesis 32:24- 30). This was not a timid act of faith, but a visceral confrontation. And what was the outcome? Not punishment or disdain from God, but a blessing and a new name, Israel, meaning "he struggles with God." Jacob's wrestling was not an act of defiance, but a deepening of his relationship with the Divine.
2. Asking Questions: A Mark of Deep Faith
Jesus, during his earthly ministry, often taught through questions. He encouraged questioning, not as a sign of disbelief, but as a path to deeper understanding. To ask questions is to show engagement, to seek understanding, and to strive for clarity.
3. Anger and Conflict: Authentic Human Emotions
To be angry with God, to feel hurt or betrayed, is not to be unfaithful. It is to be deeply human. Job, in his suffering, expressed anger and despair towards God. Yet, it wasn't his anger that was challenged; it was his friends' false perceptions of righteousness and obedience that were corrected by God.
4. Disagreement as Intimacy
Think about your closest relationships. Have they always been free of disagreements or
conflicts? Likely not. It's through these disagreements that we come to understand each other better, to refine our beliefs, and to grow closer. In the same way, our disagreements with God or scriptural teachings can be a path to deeper intimacy with Him.
5. Moving Beyond a Conflict-Averse Christianity
If we mold our faith journey around avoiding conflicts, disagreements, or questions, we are not being faithful to the dynamic relationship God desires with us. We are also potentially missing out on the depth and richness that comes from engagement, from wrestling, and from seeking understanding. A faith untested by questions and challenges is a shallow faith.
In conclusion, it is not unfaithful to wrestle with God; in fact, it may be one of the most faithful things we can do. It signifies a deep yearning for understanding, a refusal to settle for surface- level beliefs, and a genuine desire for a profound relationship with the Divine. If you've been suppressing your questions, doubts, or disagreements, let them out. Engage with God, wrestle with Him, and discover the deeper layers of your faith.