Faith Lies (with Darrell Smith): Lie #7, Real Faith Is Blind Belief

Today is the final post from Darrell Smith, sharing from his book Faith Lies: Seven Incomplete Ideas That Hijack Faith and How to See Beyond Them.

Faith Lies with Darrell Smith
Lie #7: Real Faith Is Blind Belief

Have you ever felt guilty about doubting or questioning something about your faith?

Have you ever suppressed or ignored your thoughts or ideas so as not to make waves or cause trouble in your church or faith community?

Have you ever been told that faith believes without seeing or knowing—that it is a blind leap?

Has such thinking ever failed you?

The final lie that we will push through together in this book is the idea that real faith is blind belief. Put another way, faith involves the suspension of intellect.

This lie tells us that our brains—our thinking and reasoning—get in the way of our faith and must therefore be sidelined for faith to be real or pure. This lie is sneaky. It has quietly crept its way into our lives and our culture. The results of this lie, however, are not quiet. The results range from fundamental extremists who are willing to completely, intellectually detach and blindly follow faith interpretations that call for intimidation or violence against those who do not believe to millions of faith survivors who feel forced to quietly abandon systems and doctrines that do not seem to include their lives.

This lie can make faith seem ridiculously unhelpful and irrelevant. This lie can also make faith seem violent and cruel.

Though this lie can make loud reverberations throughout our society, strangely enough, this is a lie of keeping silent—a lie of quieting objections, running from arguments, and avoiding disagreements. It is a lie of punting away our intellect in order to keep the status quo. It is a lie of hiding that which we really think or struggle with because we don’t want to appear weak in the faith.

This is a lie of a small god—a god who can only be engaged through fairy-tale-like belief. The god at the center of this lie is so weak and insecure that it cannot withstand doubt, questions, argument, or dissent.

What if God actually desires a good argument? What if our faith actually needs doubt, criticism, and exploration in order to change us—let alone change the world? What if wrestling is required?

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