Borrowed Truths

Common Sense

common sense
Borrowed Truths

Common Sense

Where is the line between faith and what we can best call common sense? This question has plagued me for quite some time now, for the Lord has throughout my life blessed me with the ability of foresight, especially when it comes to what is going to need to be done to see a project through from start to finish, and while I offer Him the thanks, and give Him the glory in these matters, one must wonder, where does our faith in Christ come into play in these instances.

Two verses came to mind, “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.” (John 15:5) And “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” (Phil. 4:13)

I do not know everything in all things that I attend to, and so I do as many others do, the research necessary to be able to complete the tasks in the most efficient manner, and not all that I have learned comes from those who call Jesus Lord, yet many of them are much more proficient than I am. Common sense is knowing how an item in your possession works, or at least the basic functions of it, so that if, or when, I should say, it breaks, you have some generalized idea of how to fix it. The Lord has given us brains, an organ of the body that has the capability to learn, either by repetitive motion, or by mistakes, even an old dog, given enough time and patience, can be taught to sit and shake.

How much faith is involved in learning something new?

I offer here Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” What we attempt to do, if even in the smallest way glorifies God, He will assist us in it, of this there is no doubt, and the person who believes and trusts will be able to accomplish all that is placed before them. It does not take faith to know that we should not run out into traffic, that is a learned trait.

When Paul was on his missionary journeys, he listened and obeyed the Holy Spirit as to where he was to go next, but he did not wait around for the Lord to make his travel plans, or to book passage on a ship, that he had to either get up and do himself or assign someone that task. “And finding a ship sailing over unto Phenicia, we went aboard, and set forth,” (Acts 21:2) confirms this truth. It did not take faith in Christ to realize that if he was going to go somewhere that he was being led by faith to go, that he would need to use the common sense he was blessed with to make the arrangements to get there, and through his own personal efforts and desires, he was, in a sense, cooperating through faith by using that common sense.

Here then is the meat of the matter, as they say, what our Lord did on the cross for us, no one else could do, if God wanted us to be with Him forever, unspotted and holy, He was going to have to make that happen. No man can add anything that was done on the cross that day, everything needed for us to enter into eternal glory was done for us, but there is one thing that Christ cannot, or will not if you like, do for us, He cannot repent for us, we must do that.

Will He help? Of course, He will lead us, guide us, instruct us, but we have been given free will, here is where we must use the common sense that the Lord has given us, here is where we must count the cost (Luke 14:28) and determine if what He says is true in His Holy Word, and then, by faith, we come to Him in true repentance. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.” (Psalm 51:17)

Make no mistake, God does not need us, we need Him, and any man that is called should have the common sense to do the research, to search the Scriptures, and then, after what is usually a very awkward and broken prayer, come by faith into His presence, and with a broken heart, in repentance, asking for forgiveness, and be prepared and willing to serve. From there, common sense and faith almost become intertwined, but faith is always what directs our feet on the path.

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