I preached a few weeks back from 1 Corinthians and as often is the case, the treasure in the passage was hiding behind the obvious parts. In between discussing the role we all play in the church gathered and reminding them that he knows he’s writing something inspired by God, Paul offers a beautiful phrase that each and everyone of us should memorize this week:
“For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.”
We experience confusion, don’t we? One fight with a friend, or crisis at work, or kid that acts out, or change to our calendar, or lab results from the doctor, and we become a hot mess real quickly.
Why are we confused at times? Just start by looking at how we fit together.
1. We have a soul that longs for eternity packed in some low-grade “cardboard” packaging that will last 70-80 years (if we’re fortunate to go that long). Those of us in Christ have a heart that’s being made new but still carry a flesh that hates God and hates answering to anyone else except ourselves. (John 6: The Spirit gives life, the flesh is no help at all.”)
2. We live in a beautiful world that’s also a fallen world.We get to see Christ working today but don’t see the finished work until he returns.
3. We have hopes for our own future and responsibility for making a plan for today but we don’t know what the next chapter holds. We never have ALL the information.
4. There’s a whole realm we can’t even see with angels and demons fighting battles around us whether we are awake or asleep. Demons, having studied humans for thousands of years, are whispering lies and enticing us to abandon the ways of the Kingdom.
5. We have limited time, intellect, creativity, imagination, ability, energy, money, capacity, and relationships.
With just this small sampling of factors, is it any wonder we feel confused at times? But here is why our confusion is ultimately dangerous:
We are quick to think that Jesus is confused like us.
But he is not. This is PHENOMENALLY good news for you and me right now.
God is not confused about you.
He is not confused about your future.
He is not confused about how he feels about you.
He is not confused about the prayers you have prayed.
He is not confused about the choices you have made.
He is not confused about His love for you.
I don’t know about you but I’ve given him ample reason to end this relationship or at least renegotiate…but he keep’s going. He is certain. In fact, it’s impossible for him to be uncertain because he’s omniscient. You can’t know everything, and wonder what’s going to happen. God’s plans happen. And to any of you that wouldn’t consider yourself a Christian reading this, I’m sorry for the ways that I or my fellow Jesus-followers have confused you about what we believe. I know we Christians act very confusing at times. But I promise that our God is not confused like us, especially not about love and grace.
“And we are quick to think that Jesus is confused like us.:”
Not only does Jesus not author confusion, he also isn’t frustrated with us in our confusion. He’s patient. When we feel lost, he guides us home. When we feel turned around, Jesus offers us rest. Because he’s not the king of confusion but He is the prince of peace.
The spirit of God is convicting but not confusing.
The spirit of God is not controlled but not chaotic.
The Spirit of God is unpredictable but never unpurposeful.
Let’s give our confusion to Him, the one who clearly sees all and loves us still.