Is it factually true to say " See God did that for me " or " that was the work of God "?

(Chanchal Delson) #1

Hey RZIM community
I was wondering how we as believers can affirmingly say that some incident worked in our favor hence God did it . Because we are not certain of the fact that it was done or not done by God . If it was done by God how do we know it .

Thanks in Advance

(Josué Aparicio) #2

The way you worded it I think has part of the answer in which one sounds self righteous and the other sounds grateful.

I personally believe we should credit God for every moment of our lives because only a humbled heart knows how every day is a miracle that we’re on this earth. However, it’s the phrasing that might need correcting but nevertheless we should speak of God’s work in our lives, of course.

I have a personal testimony of God’s work in my life which was that I had cancer as a kid and looking back now I wholeheartedly credit Him for putting the right people in place during the experience since I was nearing death. Now, I volunteer with kids who have had a similar past but I am sensitive to the language I use because I don’t think saying “God did that for me” will make anyone feel any better while they go through such an experience. I think it has to have empathy at its core.

Hope this helps! Looking forward to the responses this will get.

(Chanchal Delson) #3

Yes Jose I do get that we are alive is a miracle in itself however you say God’s work which is true for us as believers through the holy Spirit ,but there are certain situations which are confusing like I recall Professor John Lennox’s story where he was healed of a certain disease but his nephew/ niece was killed by some other illness hence he would stop people from saying " God saved You " .

So I would like to know your opinion on that Jose

(Josué Aparicio) #4

I think there’s truth in saying it but how you say it is much more important.

We need to be sensitive to how we say things that doesn’t make us sound self righteous even though our intentions are good. We need to be empathetic because phrasing matters so if you don’t know how to say it then don’t say anything at all and just reserve it for your own personal adoration of God in your relationship with him.

I think that’s what might be the case in Dr. Lennox’s example

(C Rhodes) #5

I think the problem is not knowing when GOD does something but rather understanding there is nothing done without GOD. Even the evil that we do is orchestrated by GOD. We think we know evil because we exist in a protected environment. We erroneously conclude that the pain and discomfort in this life is separate from the good. People that are willing to chance Hell, make an uninformed decision. We don’t know what it means to be permanently removed from GOD’s presence.

My current lesson is understanding that in discomfort and pain GOD is there. GOD still speaks. When we delegate the presence of GOD to only the positive, we stunt our ability to see and hear in the midst of our troubles. We lose sight of the Creator that reigns far and above the things that cause us to cry, stumble and often fall.

For me the question to answer is not, when GOD is moving, but rather acknowledging that GOD is always moving. GOD would not be GOD if the grief or pleasure of our existence could identify what sovereignty looked like. GOD would sadly be one of us, that’s not possible.

I thought about that this morning while reading in Psalms 139. “Thou knowest my down sitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word in my tongue, but , lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether. Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it. Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there . If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;
Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.” KJV.

I would have to conclude that giving GOD credit for causing things to happen is indeed factual. But because we want to designate when that is happening we “short-change” our own experience and ability to trust GOD. We seek to lay human definition to the Divine. and therefore establish when we should rejoice and be thankful. As if in our limitations we are capable of defining the unlimited. We trick our own selves into negating the presence of GOD and the ability to be thankful for it all.

(Josué Aparicio) #6

Yes, @cer7 I didn’t consider this. Thank you for adding your thoughts

(Chanchal Delson) #7

Thanks everyone for the clarification. God bless you all for doing so

(SeanO) #8

@ChanJ I think the discussion between yourself and @josueaparicio hit on a really crucial point. Gratitude in all circumstances - both good and bad - is very important. I think the danger here is rooting our trust in God in our circumstances. It would be wrong to say, “I trust in God because He healed me…” No, we trust in God whether He heals us or not, whether He delivers us from trials or not - we trust Him because we have seen His heart in Jesus Christ. Rather, as @josueaparicio noted, we should thank God when He does deliver us out of sickness or persecution, but we should also thank and trust Him when He does not.

I Thessalonians 5:16-18 - Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

We see that Job had this attitude early on in his extreme trials. He refused to curse God because He knew that He could not understand God’s ways.

Job 1:21 - And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”

As New Testament believers, we see that Jesus told us that we would suffer in this world, but that even in our suffering we should not be discouraged because Jesus is our Lord and Master. And Jesus has conquered death itself! As the old preacher saying goes, we should trust God’s heart even when we cannot trace His hand.

John 16:33 - “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Romans 8:18 - I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

Hebrews 2:14-15 - Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— 15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

Furthermore, we see that Jesus emphasizes that the greatest treasure we possess is Himself. Miraculous signs / wonders / healing cannot compare to Him. Jesus is our treasure - whether our life is good or bad, Christ is our joy and salvation.

Luke 10:18-20 - He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. 20 However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

John 17:3 - Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.

Furthermore, if we look at Paul we see that when he did boast about God’s work in his life, he boasted about the cross. The cross is the power of God to salvation. The cross is the greatest demonstration of God’s love. The cross is our hope and the means of reconciliation with God. The cross, the cross, the cross! What love and what grace!

Galatians 6:14 - May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

So I think my perspective would be: Express gratitude for every good thing in your life, but if you are going to boast, boast only that you know Christ because of the love He has shown for us through His sacrifice and the power of His resurrection

  • our trust is in God whether He heals or not
  • our boasting is in the cross of Christ, through which even death itself is conquered
  • our treasure is Christ Himself

(Sandy) #9

“For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous, with favor wilt thou compass him as with a shield” Ps 5:12
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above…” James 1:17

This is how the believer (righteous) can know. God is the source of all good!
If I may further add this, “…your Father which is in heaven…He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust” Matt 5:45…in case the thought is the believer looking at the unbeliever and seeing ‘favor’ on them, no less. Regardless of the smarts, looks, connections…or whatever might make one tempted to take credit for the favorable outcome…we trust the Word and we know the truth!
Hi @ChanJ Hope this gets to your question, let me know please, and what you think.