God’s Perfect Use of Imperfect People, Part 1

February 9, 2015 at 10:13 AM 4 comments

imperfectAs we move through Scripture, we learn about one personality and another in the form of this person or that one. It can be a fascinating study actually because from it, we learn that God doesn’t need perfect people before He can use them for His purposes. That is one of the underlying themes of Scripture. It’s very good because no one – and I mean no one – was, is, or will be perfect in this life (except Jesus).

Jesus said, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light,” (Matthew 11:28-30).

Of course, here, Jesus is referring to trying to earn our way into heaven specifically. Too many during His day (and before and since) believed that gaining eternal life was done through human effort, upholding the many rituals, and obeying the seemingly endless stream of rules under the Mosaic system. Jesus came to say (and Paul echoed that truth) that the law simply pointed out our failures and reminded us that it is impossible to keep the whole law, all of the time. In spite of that truth, people believe that is what is necessary to either gaining salvation or keeping it once received.

Jesus’ point was rather starkly simple. He said lean on HIM because He was the One who kept the law at all points all the time. Without sin, He died, shed His blood, and offered salvation to us. We gain salvation when we trust in His redemption, His atonement, His propitiation.

But what I particular like about God’s plan (apart from what I’ve just mentioned) is that God uses us in spite of our errors, faults, problems, and sin. Let me give you a couple of biblical examples that I believe translate to the real world.

If we look at Elijah, we see a man who had great faith in God. We read about one of his exploits in 1 Kings 18. There, he went head to head with the priests of Baal to see whose God was greater. Turns out that no matter what the priests did (even going so far as cutting themselves), Baal couldn’t respond to them. He couldn’t send fire to devour the offering they had set up.

Then came Elijah’s turn and he flooded the offering with water, making it that much more difficult for God to speak to people out of the fire. Yet, God had no trouble consuming the water and the water-soaked wood on the altar. While Baal seemed to be deaf and impotent, the God of Israel cut through it all and gained the victory over Baal…as if Elijah had any doubt.

As we read through this account, we can see and hear Elijah brimming with confidence. He was ecstatic, literally on a “high” for God. This was a mountain-top experience for Elijah (no pun intended), a true high point in his life.

Yet, in the very next chapter, 1 Kings 19, we see this very same Elijah running in abject fear. He was running from a woman named Jezebel. While God would not allow Satan to speak through “Baal” where the priests were concerned, this same God allowed Jezebel to threaten to kill Elijah and intimidate him thoroughly.

In 1 Kings 19:1ff, Jezebel learned of what happened on Mt. Carmel with the priests of Baal and instead of being afraid, she sent a message to Elijah saying that he would be dead by that time the next day. Elijah fled.

Not only did Elijah flee, but after a day’s journey, he sat down in the desert and essentially asked God to kill him. “But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a [f]juniper tree; and he requested for himself that he might die, and said, “It is enough; now, O Lord, take my life, for I am not better than my fathers,” (1 Kings 19:4). Why this change? Why did Elijah all of a sudden go from a tremendous high to a point where death seemed to be the only answer?

I’m no expert of the mind, but it seems to me that Elijah may have been suffering from some sort of depressive episode. He was higher than high, but now could only see death as the way out for him. God – through an angelic messenger – provided food and drink for Elijah. The angel also gave Elijah strength to continue on his journey.

People whose brains don’t work well on all cylinders, may find that at times they go from tremendous highs to unbelievable lows. This is due to the fact that when they are on a high, they are using tremendous amounts of energy during that time. But the body needs to recoup its loss of energy, so it shuts down everything it can in order to maintain and rebuild.

A normal person’s brain might simply allow them to experience the high without sending them over the top. After the situation subsides, they may be a bit tired, but they’re not exhausted, nor are they ready to ask death to come for them due to depression.

We see the apostle Peter too. Here was a man whom God revealed things to about who Jesus was and even Jesus affirmed that revelation came from the Holy Spirit, not Peter’s own mind. Obviously, at that point, Peter was tuned into God’s Spirit. At other times, he was more tuned into Satan’s mind.

There are other personalities in the Bible (Jonah, for instance) who seemed to have these up and down experiences that seemed to make them favorable to God while at other times, they were way off base. Maybe you find yourself there at times and you don’t know why. Maybe you go back and forth from appreciating who you are to hating your very self.

Is this a figment of our imagination or is there something that God wants to address? Remember, sin has corrupted everything about God’s Creation. This means sin has corrupted our flesh (so that we age and eventually die, as well as become ill along the way) and our minds (so that we cannot think correctly and find ourselves to be powerless to even submit to Him at times).

What is it about the way we think (or don’t) that creates even more problems for us? What Elijah just having an off day? Was Peter? Was there possibly something else going on that the Bible doesn’t dwell on?

Next time, I want to explore the possibilities of how our brain works and how, through the corruption of our flesh (including our brains), Satan uses it to his full advantage to keep us from living where God wants us to live.

Entry filed under: Demonic, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology, salvation, Satanism.

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  • […] or other aspects of his brain (we’ve talked about those before in our series on God’s Use of Imperfect People). Imagine how easy it is for Satan to manipulate someone’s brain so that they hallucinate, […]


  • […] In this short series of articles, we’ve been dealing with issues that affect many people and it doesn’t matter whether or not those people are saved or unsaved. Because of sin entering into this world, the entirety of God’s Creation became and remains fully corrupted. In fact, like the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, which says that things left to themselves go from order to disorder, our world, the animals, and all people are becoming more corrupt because of sin in the world and the fact that sin is constantly working against us. […]


  • […] you’re starting with this article, please go back and do a bit of catching up, with Part 1. Now, I’m not a scientist or a doctor, but I do know how to study and research things. Some […]


  • […] our first part of this short series, we referred to Elijah and Peter, two individuals who appeared to experience either highs and lows […]


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