Here’s an interesting question from Tough Questions Answered. (And there’s a poll to vote in)
As Christians we all agree that we want to follow God’s will for our lives, but there are two general approaches to following God’s will that I’ve seen in evangelicalism.
The first approach operates under the premise that God has a specific will for each and every one of our actions and decisions, and that we are obligated to discover what that specific will is.
The second approach operates under the premise that God only specifically wills that we obey his commands as revealed in the Bible, and on issues where the Bible does not speak, we use wisdom.
Here’s an example of what he means:
Let’s say that you are a Christian man looking for a spouse. You have come to know three wonderful and single Christian ladies and you are wondering which one you should pursue for marriage.
If you are a follower of the first approach, you believe that God has one, and only one, of these women chosen for you. It is your duty to discover which one of these women he has chosen in order to stay in his perfect will for your life. If you choose wrongly, you will be outside of his will for your life.
If you are a follower of the second approach, you feel free to pursue any of these three ladies for marriage. You believe that God will be pleased with any of the three women, as long as you choose wisely.
And you can imagine that this applies to all kinds of things – like what to study, what job to take, and so on.
So what do you guys think? Method 1 or Method 2? Anybody want to guess what my view is? I have a very strong opinion about the right answer to this question.
I’ll give you a hint about which one I like better. If I were explaining the first view to a non-Christian, I would describe it as God hiding Easter eggs for you and then you go through life reflecting on your intuitions and emotions and trying to hear God say “warmer” and “colder” in your ear when you get closer to or farther from his will, (i.e. – God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life).
On the second view, you get dropped behind enemy lines and the lines of communication are cut off. All you have left is the Army Field Manual, a map, and your fellow soldiers. Your job is to act in a way that you think will best achieve the General’s goals, (i.e. – God loves you and you should make a wonderful plan to participate in his plan).