Experience is a wonderful thing that we all clamor to have. When looking for a job that is one of the most asked question in job applications. Sometimes it brings confusion because they ask a person who just graduated from college about their experience, and most likely they don’t have one. Anyway, experience is still important and sometimes more important than a degree. In our walk with God experience is crucial. In Psalms 77:11, we are encouraged to remember the works of the Lord. This speaks of experience.
If you listen to Christian television or talk, they always talk about the good experiences they had. They talk about how God came through for them. From their experience God is amazing and wonderful. The opposite is true. There are people in this world who say they have horrible experiences with God and conclude that God is a terrible God. Sometimes these people come up with doctrines that are based on their experiences. Even the good experiences sometimes lead to doctrines based on their experience. We have all heard the teachings that state if you give a $1000, God will bless you. I’ve heard the testimonies of these preachers. God did genuinely tell them to give and then a miracle happened. The mistake they make is conclude the miracle happened because of the amount of money rather it happened because God told them, and they obeyed. The emphasis should be obeying God’s voice not the amount of money given.
Just like anything, if you go to the extreme with it you will be in error. Experience is a wonderful tool to have. But we shouldn’t let our experience, good or bad, influence us on how we view God or the Bible. When experience is used in the positive, we will sound like David did in Psalms 37:25, where he states, “I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread.” That is a good experience. If you look at the life of David, he had tough experiences, but he didn’t let his bad experiences influence his view on God. A better example is Job. Through all the things that the devil did to him, he never once blamed God. Scholars say that his bad experience lasted nine months to a year. After that he lived another 140 years of great prosperity. In Job 13:15 he says, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him. Even so, I will defend my own ways before Him.” He never doubted God.
Our view of God must always be based on what the Bible says He is. If your experiencing things contrary to what God says, the blame isn’t on God. In Hosea 4:6, God says His people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. The walk of faith is always challenging because it demands us to put aside our experiences and believe God’s word.