Last week this appeared on the Dallas Willard quotes Twitter feed:
We must be open to the possibility of God’s addressing us in whatever way he chooses, or else we may walk right past a burning bush.
So of course, a certain element couldn’t leave that alone and posted a reply:
Or we could stick to Scripture and be CERTAIN that He’s spoken!
And then someone blogged a link to it, writing:
Um, okay, but what if it isn’t really God? Wouldn’t we be better off just reading the Bible?
And so it goes, day after day after day after day.
God must let out a sigh each time he sees this.
Here’s my take. If you do in fact read the Bible, then you know very well that God speaks to us in different ways, through the Bible, through the general revelation and the common grace, through other people, and by the Holy Spirit.
My point here isn’t that there are a variety of methods God uses, or how many there are, or how they work. My point is the phrase “then you know very well.”
Dallas is saying in effect, don’t miss out on something God may be using to show you something or teach you something. He has infinite means at his disposal.
And deep down in our hearts we all know that to be the case.
But there are people of a certain stripe within the realm of Christianity who simply can’t wait for an opportunity to dismiss Dallas Willard’s brand of faith, and demonstrate their spiritual superiority by waving the sola scriptura flag. It’s not so much that they violently disagree with the idea that God is at work in the world around us in so many different ways, as much as it’s an attempt to exploit Dallas’ words so they can make their point, thus advancing the cause of the Bible and truth and pure doctrine.
The problem is, these people have God so completely figured out that in carrying out their version of Christian living they can sometimes miss out on what God is doing in the world around them; miss out on hearing God’s voice.
Didn’t somebody say that already?