Summary: Interactive games and technology are drawing people into and alternative reality, one that cannot be trusted. They're putting blind faith into these distractions instead of finding reasons to put faith in God.
Called to Faithfulness
Hebrews 11:1-6 NKJV
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
2 For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.
3 By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.
4 By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.
5 By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God.
6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
We are living at a time when people put more faith in technology than they do in common sense. Have you seen the folks playing “Pokémon Go”? It’s an interactive game people can play on their phones. The idea is to hunt down and capture these animated creatures.
I do not know if we have any Pokémon’s at New St. Andrews but you never know, you will have to have a phone with the app to find out. People are drawn into this animated world that is blended with our reality in a way that is unprecedented. The idea was to get kids to go outside but adults are taking this game to a whole new level.
The results are that people are trespassing on private property as they hunt Pokémon’s.
Another technology that people use and sometimes blindly is the GPS for driving. Some people still blindly follow the directions even though they can see that the directions are wrong.
And drivers who are taking directions from these GPS navigation systems literally are ending up at dead ends or in ponds or lost on back roads.
What I want to point out to you is that these people are using blind faith as they drive or as they hunt down Pokémon’s. I’m sure with the current trends we will see even more games and more people engaged in this half animated and half real world.
Which leaves me to wonder how are Christians exercising their faith these days?
We certainly have more technology at our disposal as well. I use the computer regularly for study and research and for preparing my Sunday messages. Some could argue that I am engaged in a world that is both real and imagined and they would be right in saying so.
But for me the difference is that many have gone on before me into both these worlds and what they have shared gives substance to the things I hope for and evidence of the things that I cannot now see.
For these reasons and others I can put trust and hope into my faith instead of being a blind follower.
I can look to people, places and things that support my faith in a way that makes my faith something very real instead of something only imagined. Christians who I have known during my lifetime but who are now with the Lord.
Looking at God’s word the Bible is one such place where I can meet people, real people not animated characters, but people who have lived by faith and who have demonstrated how their trust and hope in God proved real and built up their faith.
God tells us to take Him by faith even though we may not see things for ourselves to take His word for it.
God said He spoke and the world was created.
God created living things and then created man and woman as the highest of the living creatures made in God’s image.
God put human beings in a garden called Eden and provided for us.
God told us what we could eat and what we should not eat and God even told us what the consequences would be if we disobeyed.
God was faithful with us but we proved faithless as we sinned and disobeyed God.
God did not abandon us but rather faithfully provided a way back into a personal relationship with Him through His son Jesus Christ.
God gave people a second chance time and time again.
By faith these people who trusted God were saved and protected and came to know God’s favor.
One such person was Noah who built the Ark. It had never ever rained yet but God said it would and Noah and his sons began a long and difficult construction project and became the laughing stock of their community for decades. But then it rained and everyone stopped laughing.