The Wednesday feature of the Worldly Saints blog is a Scriptural meditation whereby I take a verse or passage I have been pondering lately and seek to edify my readers with it’s promises, encouragements, warnings, rebukes, etc.
Defining What It Means to Believe All Things
Someone who “believes all things” expects or hopes for good. To believe all things certainly doesn’t mean you accept error or remain content to be a gullible or naïve person. Someone who believes all things is eager to believe the best in people. He doesn’t always assume someone is lying, unless that person is simply a liar. He assumes the best and keeps the worst “at bay” in his thinking. He doesn’t jump to conclusions when someone does wrong. He isn’t by nature distrusting or cynical; he is hopeful for the best outcome.
If he hears about a heated argument between friends he gives them the benefit of the doubt and assumes they can work through their conflict. If he comes home from work and his spouse is a little short in her comments to him, he doesn’t assume she missed her quiet time, isn’t walking with the Lord and needs to be taken to a 1st stage of church discipline. He truly believes that the other person is innocent until proven guilty.
A Biblical Example of NOT Believing All Things
In the Book of Job, think of Job’s friends or companions who came to him after he lost his livestock (his financial wealth) and his children (his lineage) and his good health. They came and did not give him the benefit of the doubt. They assumed the trials struck him because he was unrighteous (Job 4-5; 8; 11; 15; 18; 22; 26). They figured God was punishing Job for wicked or hypocritical behavior. Just one example is Job 15:2-6 where Eliphaz tells Job that the reason for his calamity is his lack of fearing God, which we know to be untrue –
“2 Should a wise man answer with windy knowledge, and fill his belly with the east wind? 3 Should he argue in unprofitable talk, or in words with which he can do no good? 4 But you are doing away with the fear of God and hindering meditation before God. 5 For your iniquity teaches your mouth, and you choose the tongue of the crafty. 6 Your own mouth condemns you, and not I; your own lips testify against you.”
On and on these friends spoke to Job unlovingly telling him only the wicked perish like him, that he needed to repent, that he deserved worse than he got, that he didn’t fear God, and that he deserved his suffering. This not believing all things but assuming the worst of a man who as upright, feared God and turned from evil (Job 1:1).
A Biblical Example of Believing All Things
Consider Jesus’ treatment of Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10). As a tax collector, Zacchaeus was a hated man – a social outcast. But he was also curious about who Jesus was and when he climbed up into a tree to get a better view of Jesus, Jesus didn’t throw stones at him and publicly rebuke him for being around. He didn’t assume his curiosity was hypocritical, just because he was a tax collector. He didn’t assume Zacchaeus had another agenda to get close to the disciples and Jesus and then charge them unfairly. Jesus assumed his curiosity was good and then went to his house as a demonstration of the loving belief. Jesus didn’t give into the grumbling, unloving invitation Jesus’ accepted to go back to Zacchaeus’ house. And Jesus’ gesture helped bring Zacchaeus into the kingdom. Love believes all things.