1 Peter 1:8-9 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
The world uses the expression, blind faith, as something of a pejorative, saying that believing without seeing violates reason and logic. However, everyone operates constantly on the basis of things they can’t prove ahead of time. Life is impossible without a degree of trust, and that is what this is all about. We sit in chairs trusting that they will hold us up. We use electronic equipment trusting that it will function as advertised, whether we have any idea how it does it or not. Why would it be any different in interacting with our Creator? I don’t think any theologian could fully explain the mechanics of redemption, of how Jesus’ suffering and death atoned for the sins of mankind, but countless people down through the centuries have experienced it, and that is precisely what Peter is talking about here. If you don’t have the joy he is talking about, the probability is high that you haven’t really surrendered yourself fully to Jesus as Lord. In English we separate the terms, “Savior” and “Lord,” but in Japanese the term for Savior is written as “saving Lord.” I like that. If He isn’t your Lord then He isn’t your Savior, and you have no reason for the joy of salvation that Peter is talking about. None of us obeys Jesus perfectly on earth, which is one reason the joy of heaven surpasses anything we can experience here. However, I have always liked the hymn that says, “Trust and obey, for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey,” Call it blind faith if you like, but the results are certainly worth it!
I grew up in a very intellectual family that at the same time was foremost a family of faith. I can’t imagine a better home environment! I can’t remember a time when I didn’t know about, believe in, and love Jesus, but that doesn’t mean I was always obedient to Him. I have had to learn obedience like everyone else. That said, I have had a taste of the joy Peter is talking about that I can never forget. I was in a small prayer meeting with an Augustinian friar, a Jesuit priest, and Pentecostal pastor, and joy washed over me to a degree that I literally thought, “Lord, if you have more work for me to do here, then you’d better back off a little.” I felt like one more drop and my body would give up and I would go straight to heaven! (Incidentally, the other people present were American, German, and Japanese. Nationality is irrelevant to heaven, as Revelation 7:9 makes clear.) That experience certainly erased any fear of death I might have had, and it made me want to be more obedient, more in step with my Lord, so as to flow with His Spirit in His joy for His glory.
Father, thank You for the faith You have given me and for the various experiences You have arranged to strengthen and reinforce that faith. May my spiritual eyes be open so that it won’t be blind faith at all, but rather seeing what my physical eyes can’t perceive, so that I may walk in full obedience, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!