More from Peter Kreeft's Three Philosophies

Specifically, why does Job experience God's absence when God promised to be present? One part of the answer is easy: God is testing Job's faith. Job must believe in God as real and present and faithful not only because it is easy to believe, because things are going well, because experience so confirms faith that faith is almost unnecessary; he must also learn to believe in God out of sheer faith, even when experience and appearances seem to contradict faith--like Jesus on the Cross, forsaken by God, without consolation of any kind. Such faith is infinitely more precious than the cheap and dispensible faith that leads you in the same direction as experience does. Teeth-gritting faith is valuable not because suffering is valuable in itself or because teeth gritting is valuable in itself but because such faith comes from the deep, eternal center of the person, the I, the will, not from feelings, environment and what happens in the world. For the world will pass away, but the self will not. What the self decides in time is ratified in eternity. The stronger the choice for God at this obscure and unemotional center of the self, the surer and deeper will be the eternal salvation of the whole self. The will is the custodian of the feelings and must learn to lead them, not follow them.



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This page contains a single entry by MamaT published on August 24, 2006 7:38 AM.

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