If we asked you what are the enemies of faith, how would you respond? Would you say family, government, business or religion can stand as enemies of faith? Probably not. We so rely on these 4 key systems that we miss the subtle promotion of faith in man built into each one.
The 4 systems of man
Like most people living in modern society, we accepted the systems of man as something harmless or natural. We had an extended family, owned a business, worked for government and went to church. Normal average lives. What we did not see was the enmity to faith at the core of each of these systems. As God drove us deeper into poverty and homelessness, He opened our eyes to what lay at the heart of what man has created.
By the fall of 2012 Jesus had tested our faith many times; now God would make us test the 4 systems of man to expose how they promote faith in man. These ‘systems’ are family, religion, government and business. These are the safety nets in society that keep us from having faith, a practical uncompromising faith, in the Living God. Each one is not wrong but when they promote a faith in man instead of God, then they are a problem.
The built in danger
When we examine these systems from God’s perspective, these are not safety nets but traps. When we rely on man to give us money or resources, we give them power over us. The threat of removal of those resources and the consequences that follow cause us to submit to their demands, even if we violate our faith in doing so.
For the next 3 years, God allowed our family to be caught for a time so we could see the nature of the trap from the inside. Each time members of the system would ask us, indirectly, to renounce our faith in God to continue to receive help. Each time we refused, they applied more pressure until we came to a breaking point. At the point of greatest pressure, our family had to make a critical choice.
We had to decide whether to keep receiving aid or to follow God, even if this meant being thrown out into the street.
What we endured
- Our biological family left us without funds in the middle of winter expecting us to return to the west and give up our faith. We refused but God provided alternate means to keep us housed.
- Government gave us grievous conditions to accept their social assistance. We refused and they cut us off, making our family homeless again.
- Business trapped me in a hopeless daily grind just to make ends meet. Before it could destroy our faith, my employer fired me, which led to another bout of homelessness.
- Religion demanded we submit to their system to receive help. When we refused church leaders forced our departure, spreading rumors and lies about us after we left. This happened in the dead of winter once, with the leaders showing no remorse for their treachery.
Faith in man vs. faith in God
We mention these in brief to reveal that the 4 systems of man may seem innocent but they are opposed to practical faith in Jesus. The goal is to require man look to man for help instead of looking to God. No system is innocent when they place conditions, restrictions and limitations on their help to force recipients away from an uncompromising faith in God.
When we choose faith in Jesus over faith in man, we are showing our trust in the Uncreated God for our daily bread. Jesus wants our soul to be free from the pull of man, and his threats, for man is but a created being. God alone is Lord and has the power to provide for our needs. Our responsibility is to trust Him in uncompromising faith.
Spiritual children grow in faith
When we are spiritual children, or not in a relationship with Jesus, the 4 systems of man can be helpful and effective. There is a purpose for them in which they serve as trustees, guardians and administrators as we grow. However, if we choose to mature, we need to be weaned from faith in man and transition to faith in God. Being loosed from dependence on man and moving to dependence on the Father. This is like a bride that leaves her father’s house to live in the house of her groom. We call this transition time, the wilderness.
Those systems that support us as spiritual children will not support us as spiritual adults. As we grow in faith, we must prepare to step away from the 4 systems of man and place our trust, hope and faith in the Father alone. Without such maturity our faith in man will forever trap us and we cannot have faith in God. May you grow in wisdom and mature uncompromising faith.
Homer and Wanda