Contending for the faith | Making Disciples | Equipping the Saints for Ministry

by Rayola Kelley

       Q: I have heard some people say that they are letting God out of the “box” to discover Him in ways that others are now claiming to border on heresy. Without assuming I know what they mean or where it might be leading people who follow their example, would you give me your understanding regarding this confusion?

       A: Lately I have been hearing this term from a couple of sources. I have used the term “God in the box” in the past. However, the God of the Bible cannot be boxed in. Solomon put God in this perspective: “But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have built” (1 Kings 8:27)!

       The term “God in the box” is in reference to a person’s perception of God. Man often puts his understanding about God in a box according to doctrinal or theological influences as a means to “control” Him according to such personal understanding. Job and his friends had such “boxes” as far as their understanding of God. It was not that these men were wrong about God; it is that He will sometimes operate outside of man’s “box”. Every time God moves outside of personal understanding, He will end up shaking such limited “boxes”.

       At such times a person must make a decision. Regardless of whether he or she understands, he or she still must choose to trust that God is who He is. If the person does not choose the way of faith, he or she will go into unbelief, throwing all of his or her belief system out the door simply because God did not fit into his or her understanding. This type of unbelief ends in delusion because such people turn around and create a god to their own liking.

       I understand this place because I have been there a few times. I have my “box” of understanding towards God. However, the challenges of life caused the darkness of confusion and ignorance to shake my “box” on numerous occasions. I had to simply step outside of my personal understanding of God to believe that God is who He is. This is the essence of true faith. I had to realize that due to His infinite state and my finite state, I will not understand His workings and ways, but I need to trust His character. Each time I chose the way of faith in such challenges, the darkness eventually gave way to the work of the Holy Spirit as He unveiled the depth of my Lord’s character and work in greater measure, enlarging my “box” or understanding of Him.

       This brings me to the source we must use to test all matters when it does come to the truth, character and ways of God. Sadly, the individuals who have used this term lately have gone into delusion. The main reason they have gone into delusion is because they have either thrown all standards of truth out the door, or they have minimized them, stripping truth of authority and validity.  When it comes to the true God of heaven, there is only one standard of truth we must judge all spiritual matters by, and that is the Word of God. Since many theological “boxes” contain Scriptural truths, those who throw out or denounce their particular “boxes” also reject the Word as being the one standard of truth that not only properly presents God, but also must be used to properly test what they are or have embraced. Granted, the Holy Spirit must be active in unveiling the intent of the counsel of the complete Word of God in Scripture concerning a matter, but without the discipline, boundaries and standard of the Word of God, these people are throwing open a door to the occult. Through that door every counterfeit will come in to delude, seduce and produce a counterfeit spirit, Jesus and Gospel that will be to the liking of their disillusioned or disgruntled state of mind (2 Corinthians 11:1-3).

       The bottom line to such people is that they do not have a love for the truth (2 Thessalonians 2:10-12). They want their own reality, and they want God to adjust to it. The main reality that people are clinging to is the reality that will allow them to feel good about themselves in their unbelieving, deluded state. In this feel- good state, God is all love and simply desires them to be happy regardless of the pigpen of perversion and unbelief they are wallowing in. In this state, there is no sin, standard of holiness (consecration and sanctification), call to righteousness, hell or eternal consequences. Ultimately, some even believe they can become a god according to their consciousness as they strive to be a “good person” according to their own standards. However, the Bible describes such a state as being the ways of sin and death (Proverbs 14:12; 16:25).

       My advice is simple. Stick with the Word of God. Believe what God says about all matters of life and death. Such belief will ensure that you are standing on that immovable Rock. When your “box” of understanding is shaken, cling to the Lord even more so as you choose to praise Him, knowing that He is bringing you higher in your understanding of Him.