The Sound Of Silence
Most all Christians at some time or another make the statement: “I wish God had just come right out and told us…” x, y, or z. Possibly we wish more guidance in implementing a clear command, or, in love, we wish to avert a controversy. While these are noble feelings, it is important that we recognize that the silence of God is not arbitrary — it was designed. The Bible is quite clear on this.
Every word of God is of extreme value: We cannot ignore one of them and expect to live (Matthew 4.4). On the other hand, the scriptures thoroughly furnish us unto every good work (2 Timothy 3.16-17). Thus, our spiritual lives require that we not go beyond what we have been given (2 John 1.9; Jude 1.3). An objective knowledge of the paragraph above is helpful, but we still long for more. Is such longing sinful? Could it show a lack of faith?
Perhaps it would help if we recognized that the way of salvation was forged by the omniscient Father before the worlds were even created (Ephesians 1.3-14). It was not an afterthought. Nothing was left to chance. If it is not there, it is because God does not want it there. Now I do not claim to know why we are not given specifics on what Paul’s “thorn in the flesh” was, the conduct of the Lord’s Supper in a second meeting on the Lord’s Day, the procedures for securing a local preacher and appointing elders and deacons, the methods for organizing our local benevolent and spiritual work, etc. I do not know the reasons, but I do know that there were reasons. One possibility: God wants us to “work out [our] own salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2.12), not to be mindless automatons.
Additional insight might be attained by considering a system devised by God which did provide the details that we often long for: The Old Testament. Did this help? Did it make them any more spiritual? Did it make them murmur less? Have fewer divisions? Have less controversy? Was it able to save? No. If we have a mind to argue, we will argue regardless of the detail given us; and if we have a mind to serve the Lord, we will have no problem working within the spirit of his word (1 Corinthians 2.14-16). Let us rest in the assurance that God has provided everything that we need. Our problem is not that we need more; it is that we are not taking full advantage of what we have.