For a long time, I have said "If you want to mess with your theology, just read the Bible". We all have a theology, our view of God. The question is, what is our understanding based upon. Often times the basis of our knowledge of God is what we were told as children or have heard from others whom we trust. When we turn to the Bible, much of what we think we know is called into question.
Exodus 4 is a great example. Why would God harden the heart of Pharaoh (Exodus 4:21), since the reason Moses is being sent to Egypt was to free the people from slavery? Wasn't hardening Pharaoh's heart going to make that more difficult? How could God have chosen Moses to lead His people out of Egypt and then plan to kill Moses in Exodus 4:24? Would God not have noticed this problem before choosing Moses?
There are some things God has chosen not to reveal to man (Deuteronomy 29:29, Romans 11:33-34). However, studying God's Word does answer many questions that arise. The question of hardening Pharaoh's heart is answered in Romans 9:14-18. To answer the question of killing Moses, let's ask another question: What importance does God put on obedience to His covenants and commands (Genesis 17:9-14)? How important is the covenant of circumcision? My unanswered question is why did Moses not circumcise his two sons? How did Zipporah know this was the critical issue?
Lord God may I obediently accept Your revelation. May my understanding of You and Your will be derived from Your Word only.
Once again I am amazed at the honesty of the Bible in depicting the struggles of the saints. John the Baptist recognized Jesus while he was still in his mother's womb (Luke 1:44), when he baptized him (John 1:29-34) and the next day as he pointed Him out to two of his disciples (John 1:35-36). Yet, as John sits in jail, he sends his men to ask Jesus "Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?". Jesus' answer is interesting. Instead of just saying yes, He points John to scripture. In many passages of the Old Testament, the Messiah is described by what He would do when He came, uniquely so in Isaiah. In Isaiah29:18-19, 35:5-6, 42:6-7, 61:1-3; the Messiah does all the things Jesus tells the messengers to report back to John. Jesus' answer is to look at what scripture says and decide based on what was prophesied about Him. When I have questions about God, I am so thankful for the answers He has already given me in His word. Oh that I would be more diligent to see Jesus in all of Scripture.
1 Corinthians 8:1-13
Reading 1 Corinthians 8 reminds me of Luke 17:1-2, "Temptations to sin are sure to come, but woe to the one through whom they come! It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin".
Paul prefaces his discussion of eating meat offered to idols, by comparing knowledge, which is about self, to love, which is about others. He stresses the need for those with "knowledge" to be extra careful with fellow believers who are tempted to go against their own conscience because of your actions. So according to Luke 17:1-2, I should pay extra attention to these "little ones" and not tempt them to sin. Verse 11 says sinning against your brother is sinning against Christ.
I need help, Lord Jesus! May my actions based on freedom in You never lead others to sin.