Dave Swavely –
All Christians want to be assured that they are operating within the will of God. Unfortunately, in many cases, we have been sold a phony bill of goods by some mainstream evangelical teachers when it comes to knowing what that will is. We use the language of mysticism when talking about why we make certain decisions. Consider the different reasons someone might choose a particular college:
“I prayed about it and the next day I received an acceptance letter – Since that was the first one, I knew it was God’s will that I go there.’
“I saw three different advertisements for this college in the same day. I know God was telling me to choose this one.”
“I read the statement of faith and felt the Lord telling me this was the one.”
It may seem like a stretch to think that people actually make decisions this way, but I assure you, it’s not. People seem to think that God’s will is some kind of mysterious force that keeps eluding the children of God. They foolishly think that some kind of extra-biblical, special revelation is needed to make right decisions. That is why we hear phrases like, “the Lord told me…” or “the Lord spoke to me….” This is a reflection of a lack of trust in God’s sufficient Word. ALL that we need to make wise decisions is found on the pages of Scripture.
Dave Swavely patiently helps us understand the wrong way of going about this process in the first half of his book, Decisions, Decisions. He helps us understand why those types of phrases are not an accurate way to indicate God’s leading in a situation, but that they are, in fact, misleading and a misrepresentation of God. Then, with biblical wisdom, stellar clarity and more patience, he creates a picture of biblical decision making that, if applied, will take the mystery out of it. He explains the difference between the sovereign will of God that cannot be known by us and His moral will that is made known to us.
You will be glad to learn that there is much freedom in the choices we make when we follow the principles put forth in the Bible.