There is a problem-solving methodology used in many lines of work to search out the root cause of a problem. It uses a simple cause-and-effect analysis by asking the question “why” for several iterations until the true reason that causes a problem is found. The good thing about using this approach is that it can be applied to anything; it doesn’t have to be specific to a career setting.
Often times we really need to approach the practices of our theology and doctrine in the same way. The ultimate driver and motivation of our faith should be the Word of God, but so many times the Bible is replaced by culture, practices of our denomination, our parents/elders, or even our friends. To find out the real reason of why we believe what we believe, or do what we do, we should always look back to the Bible. It should be the only authority of our faith as Christians. We can see, in the following passage, how this was misconstrued by the Pharisees regarding Judaism. They had allowed their practices and laws to take priority over having a genuine love for the Lord and serving Him with that mindset.
So a second time they called the man who had been blind, and said to him, “Give glory to God; we know that this man is a sinner.” He then answered, “Whether He is a sinner, I do not know; one thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.” So they said to him, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?” He answered them, “I told you already and you did not listen; why do you want to hear it again? You do not want to become His disciples too, do you?” They reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are disciples of Moses. We know that God has spoken to Moses, but as for this man, we do not know where He is from.” The man answered and said to them, “Well, here is an amazing thing, that you do not know where He is from, and yet He opened my eyes. We know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is God-fearing and does His will, He hears him. Since the beginning of time it has never been heard that anyone opened the eyes of a person born blind. If this man were not from God, He could do nothing.” They answered him, “You were born entirely in sins, and are you teaching us?” So they put him out. | John 9:24-34
After a denomination has been around for a while, you see that certain legalistic practices start to become prevalent. The same thing happened to the Pharisees within Judaism. They got so concerned with obeying and following the law to the point that they completely overlooked why they were following it to begin with. Even when Christ healed a man who was born blind, their first reaction was to question where He came from and His source of power, rather than giving glory to God for the miracle that had been done. They were so self-consumed, thinking that everyone else but them was born in sin and that they had lived pious and holy lives since the days of their training.
When we practice our faith, we have to be careful not to go down that same slippery slope of being consumed in ourselves through our faith. Sometimes we follow so closely with what has been culturally set by our families or our churches that we overlook the reason why we do those things in the first place. We need to make a conscious effort to be real about our faith and practice God’s word with genuineness of heart rather than following blindly. Let’s strive to be stronger Christians through our walk in the days to come!