Tuesday, January 11, 2011

He is There and He is not Silent

Many years ago I read a book by Francis Schaffer entitled, "He is There and He is not Silent." It is a philosophical treatment of the existence of God. Schaffer's argument is that God is real and he reveals himself to us in a variety of ways. However, he may not reveal himself as we would like.

I for one like evidence and I like tangible truth. Perhaps that's why I so much enjoy nature, science, and wilderness. In the natural world we see the results of God's creative power, as if he were a painter and the earth was His canvas.

The Scriptures tell us that God reveals himself in two basic ways: In The Scriptures and in creation. We distinguish between these two forms of revelation by referring to creation as God's General Revelation of Himself and the Scriptures as God's Special Revelation of Himself. Creation is a visible and tangible expression of God, but it cannot specifically tell us things about God and his will. The Scriptures do that for us. Psalm 19 is the great passage in the Scriptures that teach us this.

Is it any wonder that Christians tend to have a great appreciation for nature and wilderness education? When we head out in to the woods and mountains it's as if God were calling out to the Christian, "here I am, my beloved!"

When Job struggled with the issue of suffering he asked, as we all do in times of suffering, "God, where are you? Why will you not talk to me and explain to me why this is happening to me?!" God's answer to Job was, "Job, look at my creation! Look at what I have made!" God proceeded to give Job a tour de force of the greatness of His creation and it quelled Job's thirst to understand and know God. After that experience with God and his creation, Job found peace and restoration.

It was John Muir, the mountain mystic, who said, "let us go to the mountains and receive their glad tidings!" Indeed, when I want to experience the power, greatness, and majesty of my God, that's where I go.

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