Leon Mauldin tells about seeing a message on a church marquee that read: “A church with few answers, many questions, but great faith.” On the surface that sounds good. It sounds humble. Here is a church open, willing to consider everything from a fresh perspective. A church not rigid, not bound by traditionalism.
Leon, however, correctly observes: “Continuing to have few answers and many questions is not always the sign of great faith.” Paul condemned some who were “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim 3:7). The beloved John in his gospel uses the word “know” 94 times. And in his short epistle of only five chapters, the word “know” is used 32 times in I John. While none of us know everything, and there may be some things we don’t know, there is much that we do know for sure.
(1) I know that Jesus is God (1 Jn 5:6-10). I have studied the evidence, both from Scripture and secular history. I realize there are many unbelievers in the world, but there is no question that Jesus was and is the Christ. The witnesses confirm that claim. I can “know in whom I have believed.”
(2) I know the Truth has set me free from sin (Jn 8:32). Of course, some believe we can’t come to an agreement on what is truth. I believe there is an objective standard. Jesus said that God’s Word is Truth (Jn 17:17). The Truth is that God loved us so much he sent Christ to die for our sins. Through the Holy Spirit he revealed His Word and gave us a plan by which we could be reconciled to Him. The plan is simple and easy to understand. I know what it is. I know that I have obeyed it. I know that it has freed me from the bondage, burden and blame of sin.
(3) I know that being in fellowship with God requires that I obey His commandments (I Jn. 2:4-5). The idea that there are few answers, but many questions, so I might not know what is right is ridiculous. I may not know what some obscure symbol in the book of Revelation means, but I know what is right and wrong. I know that there is “one Lord, one faith and one baptism.” I know that there is just “one God” and not many. I know there is just “one hope.” I know there is only “one body” which is the church of the Lord. And I know that He expects me to change. Not be conformed to the world, but to be transformed.
(4) I know that God hears my prayers (1 Jn 5:15). Does he say “yes” to everything I want? No! Sometimes He does says, “Yes!” Others times, the answer is “No.” Or God may say, “Not now.” Or “Be patient and wait a while.” But He hears. He cares. He understands. I know that.
(5) I know that I have eternal life in Him ( I Jn 5:13). There is no doubt. No uncertainty. He promised it. That settles it. I know I have the hope of heaven. No question.
What do you know? If you know God, know Jesus and know His Word, you will have fewer questions, more answers, and greater faith. I know it!
—Ken Weliever, The Preacherman