“Though He slay me, yet will I hope in Him.” -Job 13:15
There is a difference of translations when it comes to this verse in Job. Regardless, the truth remains that, no matter which translation you choose, Job never questions that God is! He is in the midst of a quandary, wondering, Why is God doing this to me? However, he never questions if God is. It is always, God is! But I still must know why He is causing this to happen to me. By the end of the book, Job has his answer. He has done this to me justly because He is God. Who am I to question God’s wisdom? Blessed be the name of the Lord. At the end it really is, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him,” without question. Job never wavers in his belief that God is and that it is God with whom he has to do!
What is the nature of your own belief in God? You may think, as long as He does what I expect of Him, I will believe He is. Is this the condition of your belief? Or is it God is, no matter how wrongly I interpret or misinterpret Him. There is no wavering in the belief that God is! He is as much or more than I am. God has always been, is, and will always be.
I can personally say, by God’s mercy and grace, that I have never once doubted His being. My belief in Him has always been firm from my earliest memory. But this is not the nature of the belief of some. There are those who say they once “believed” in God but no longer do. Or, they say they once believed in God but no longer pay Him any attention. They now ignore that He is there and ignore what He says. Consequently, in their eyes, He has no impact on their life. Unbeknownst to them, He has every impact on their life in His own hands!
This all has to do with the nature of your belief. You can say you once believed in God but no longer do. This only shows your belief in God was not authentic. It was only a fleeting dabbling. Once one has put their complete trust in the God who is, through their trust in Jesus, His Son, and His death on the cross for their personal sins, His Spirit truly indwells them; according to God’s own words, they are reborn in Him. He never again leaves them or forsakes them. Such is a sacred and fixed promise. If one says he once believed and now does not, the “belief” he once had was inauthentic. This appears to be a more frequent occurrence then we may realize, but we see evidence of it too often.
Is falling away possible after an authentic faith in the God who is? Hebrews 6 hints at the real possibility of this but also declares that such as these cannot be renewed to repentance once they turn away. This passage must be carefully interpreted; it must be interpreted by other Scriptures which declare that once the rebirth by the Spirit of God takes place, such a spiritual remake is as certain as God’s own spoken promises. Hebrews 6 is more a warning against doing what cannot even be conceived. It is a warning not even to think you can imagine walking away from the God of your salvation.
Once genuine faith is truly activated, it accomplishes a certain transformation. The Scriptures say that, “Now, faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” and “without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him.”
The Scriptures encourage us, “But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.” Furthermore, “I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”
There are numerous Scriptures that affirm the “begun” work of salvation being “accomplished” in you, not by your own power, but by Him who promises the certain salvation of those who place their faith authentically in Him. You are asked, nevertheless, to “be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fail.” You cannot authentically believe and then not exercise your faith in following Jesus and hanging on His every word.
Re-examine the nature of your belief in the God who is. Make certain you have believed in the God of your salvation and in His Son who makes it possible for you to draw near to God. Ask His Spirit to indwell your life as the Comforter, promised by Jesus Himself to assure your heart of your confidence in Him. The nature of your belief matters. Your continued pursuit of God authenticates that belief.
“O to grace how great a debtor daily I’m constrained to be; let that grace now, like a fetter, bind my wandering heart to Thee. Prone to wander—Lord, I feel it—prone to leave the God I love; here’s my heart, O take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.”
(Third verse of Robert Robinson’s hymn, “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing,” 1758)
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