Four Approaches to God

4 Approaches To God

Sanjay Nagar, 7 June 2005
Domenic Marbaniang

1. JACOB – “If” (Gen. 28: 20, 21) – The Conditional Approach
- The Conditional Approach is also a utilitarian approach
- The Conditional Approach signifies Ignorance of the True nature of God
- The Conditional Approach signifies Unbelief in God
- The Conditional Approach signifies lack of total commitment
A. Jacob was an opportunist
B. Jacob had to go the hard way to learn of his utter helplessness and his need for God
C. At last, at Peniel, Jacob is alone with God, confesses his need, his character, and obtains blessing.
- In Ch. 28 God says, “I will not forsake you till I bless you.” In Ch. 32 it is he who says, “I will not leave You till you bless me.” He has learnt that without God he was nothing and could not move further without Him.
- At Peniel, he has no more conditions. He realizes that God is his God and his all.

2. NAAMAN – “Behold I Thought” (2 Kgs. 5: 11, 12) – The Rational Approach
- The Rational Approach is also an egoistic approach (Knowledge puffs up)
- The Rational Approach does not submit to the Law of God but rebels against it. 1 Cor. 2: 14 The Psuchichos man (rational).
• Eve – “Why should I be deprived of such good fruit?”
• Korah – “Why Moses and Aaron?”
- The Rational Approach desires God to conform to the dictates of reason and to work accordingly.
A. God’s ways are not understandable by reason but by faith. (Hb. 11: 3)
B. God’s ways, however, are not contrary to reason for they are true.(Rev. 15:3). They only transcend reason. There is always a reason on which faith is based.
C. Naaman only got cleansed when he accepted the injunction with child-like simplicity and followed it in humility.

3. ASAPH – “Behold I have cleansed… in vain” (Ps. 73: 13) - The Materialistic Approach
- The Materialistic Approach gives rise to feelings of Theological vanity.(13)
- The Materialistic Approach gives rise to internal perplexity, confusion, boredom, and anxiety. (14)
- The Materialistic Approach makes one irritant towards God and fellowmen.(21)
- The Materialist remains as a beast though close to God.(22)
A. The Solution to the Materialist problem cannot be had materialistically (16)
B. The Answer to the Materialist problem is got by approaching God’s Sanctuary (The Place of God separated from ‘worldly’ ‘secular’ pursuits)
- An understanding of our separation from the world through past history of God’s dealing with us.
- An understanding of our separation from the world through present position in Christ.
- An understanding of our separation from the world through future hope of us and hopelessness of the world.

4. JOB – “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him.” (Job 13: 15) – The Spiritual Approach.
- The Spiritual Approach is an approach of Trust
- The Spiritual Approach is an approach of Knowledge (2 Tim. 1: 12)
- The Spiritual Approach is an approach of Total Commitment (Dan. 3: 17)
- The Spiritual Approach is an approach of Love (Dt. 6:5; Ps. 31:23; Song 8:6)


Conclusion
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