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March 8, 2000





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GREAT QUESTIONS OF THE BIBLE:
"Where is our faith?"
bluebullLuke 8:25
___
"One day Jesus said to his disciples, 'Let’s go to the other side of the lake.' So they got into a boat and set out. As they sailed, he fell asleep. A squall came down on the lake, so that the boat was being swamped, and they were in great danger.
___"The disciples went and woke him, saying, 'Master, Master, we’re going to drown!'
LARRY MADDOX
Pastor, Central Baptist Church, Itasca
___ "He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm. 'Where is your faith?' he asked his disciples" (Luke 8:22-25a).
___ Some things appear to be made for getting lost: The matching sock, a contact lens, 3-year-olds in the mall, and, of course, the television remote control. But is there anything more illusive, more difficult to keep a handle on, than faith?
___ It seems incredible that the disciples would go anywhere with Jesus and not remember to pack the faith. Perhaps, rather than leaving their faith on the shore, they had just misplaced it, like searching for reading glasses perched on top of one's head. And although it does appear that Jesus is looking for something the disciples should have with them, he could have just as well been wondering where their faith was directed. He might have said, "If your faith is in the Son of the One True God of the Universe and you brought along just a little of it, you would not be afraid."
___ Actually, the whole thing sounds pretty familiar to me. Like the disciples, my worries are a result either of seeing God smaller than he is or of not exercising my faith in a Mighty God.
___ Several years ago, I was traveling with my family for the holidays. In the middle of a rather desolate stretch of highway, the radiator hose of the car suddenly burst, and the engine died. Not being any sort of mechanic, I opened the hood, sighed, and put out the "Please Call for Help" windshield cover.
___ As I opened the door to get back in the car, I was thinking, "God, how could you let this happen to me?"
___ After I explained our hopeless situation, one of our little angels in the back seat suggested that if we prayed God would send some help. Now I was even more angry inside. Not only had God let us be stranded, but now I was going to have to pray and wait until my children asked why God had not answered. But we prayed, and as I said "amen" and looked up to the rear-view mirror, I saw that a policeman had just pulled up behind us. My daughter had not misplaced the faith she had in a big God.
___ Consider this: The Bible passage says the boat "was being swamped." In other words, it was filling with water. What would have happened if the disciples had let Jesus keep sleeping? If Jesus is God’s Son and we have placed our faith in him, what might have happened then or what will happen now rests safely in his hands.




Previous Columns: 7/14, 7/21, 7/28, 8/4, 8/11, 8/18, 8/25, 9/1, 9/8, 9/15, 9/22, 9/29, 10/6, 10/13, 10/20 10/27, 11/17, 11/24, 12/1,12/15, 12/1,1/5, 1/12. 1/19, 1/26, 2/2, 2/9, 2/16, 2/23, 3/1.

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