The potential arrogance of understanding

I know that I seek knowledge. In fact, I do like to uncover relationships in things that are, seemingly, unrelated and see how they all fit together. When I was younger I watched a lot of PBS. Shows like Cosmos, The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau, Nova, Nature, and even Bits and Bytes were endlessly interesting in how they uncovered how the world worked according to science and even faith. There was one show, in particular, that made a lasing impression on ma called Connections with James Burke. It was exciting because it was part mystery, part history, and endlessly fascinating helping me understand the interrelations between what is happening today in light of developments that seemed impossible to uncover. Yes, I have a rather insatiable appetite to understand and comprehend. I am reading a short book now called The Joy of Keeping Score: How Scoring the Game Has Influenced and Enhanced the History of Baseball. Needless to say I am enjoying it quite a bit.

The one thing that I cannot do, as a human that has only been on this planet for 47 years, is determine what is true (ultimately or subjectively) based on what I understand. I often say to myself "I don't get it. Can you explain it to me?" Sometimes the explanation clarifies things for me and sometimes it confuses me further. Yet, the fact is not any less true if I do not understand it. My comprehension does not activate something outside of me to instantiate a particular idea as inviolable. Nothing is dependent upon my understanding. To the contrary, there is much that is dependent on my submission.

I don't understand internal combustion. Yet, my submission to its principles allows me to get from point A to point B much quicker than if I refused to be subject to its effects. I don't understand why I need to love people just because they are people. Yet my acquiescence to that principle (command) allows me to be who I was created to be in a measure that I would not find had I violated that ideal (command). Do I believe because I understand? No. I simply believe because I am incapable of understanding both ultimate and even trivial matters.

I cannot say to God that I will refuse to trust him just because I cannot understand why he would command me to do such and such or to say something is true that I cannot comprehend. That smacks of arrogance to me. The "it is" and "it will be" of God is simply this: declarations of the only one who comprehensively knows his creation and himself. There is no doubt that he offers his question of "Do you understand?" to me. And when I say "No" I see him smiling and nodding knowing my limitations and does not question me further. He simply sits back content to lead me with a simple, gentle invitation: "Then trust me."

How could I not? His love for me perfected in the provision of his Son as the leader (Lord) of my life and the forgiver (savior) of my sins compels me to do just that.


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