by Pastor Tim Burt
When I was first married and a young Christian, there was an area of my life I was physically tormented in. I had a disease that they said there was no cure for. It was not life threatening but the symptoms were something I’d have to live with for the rest of my life. There were days and nights that I felt tormented. There were other times when the symptoms would go away and I’d feel perfectly fine. But, then the symptoms would return. When they did, I’d lay in my bed at night and “reason together with God.”
What is “reasoning with God?” It is an intimate time with God where instead of filling Him with your thinking, He teaches you how He thinks and instructs you to think like Him. It is the process of transforming your mind. Romans 12:2 puts it like this: “Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do, and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will really is.”
When I first gave my life to the Lord I always felt stained from sin. It was hard for me to believe my sins were really forgiven. I was taught to defeat Satan’s accusations and those feeling of inadequacy by reasoning with God. This was God’s instruction to us to learn how to defeat the devil’s accusations. Isaiah 1:18 says, “Come now, let us reason together," says the Lord. "No matter how deep the stain of your sins, I can remove it. I can make you as clean as freshly fallen snow. Even if you are stained as red as crimson, I can make you as white as wool.”
I have never been one to argue with or blame God for anything. If something is wrong, it’s either my fault or an attack of Satan. Either way, it means I need to repent or resist every attack of the devil. When it was an attack, I would reason with God in prayer. I would present my case based on the promise of His Word. Isaiah 43:26 says, ”Put Me in remembrance; Let us contend together; State your case, that you may be acquitted.” Why would I need to put God in remembrance? Does He forget things? Of course not! By putting God in remembrance, we put ourselves in remembrance. It is so that we can learn to repent of sin or stand against an attack by standing on the promise of God’s Word by faith. We have to know that God wants to help us in order to believe in faith for His help and receive it.
I would lie in bed at night reasoning with God. “Lord Jesus, you have washed my sins away. Though they be as red as crimson, you’ve clothed me in your righteousness and made me white as wool. You’ve forgiven me! When you forgave me, you delivered me from every attack and penalty that sin brought to my life. Galatians 3:13 says, “But Christ has rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When he was hung on the cross, he took upon himself the curse for our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." Jesus you’ve delivered me from the curse of sickness and disease in the same way you took away my sins. To those that came to you in faith, you healed them all. I thank you for delivering me from this disease.”
Night after night I would have these prayerful conversations with the Lord reminding Him the promise of His Word - that He said we “should reason together”. I’d remind Him of every person Jesus healed and how He was honored by their faith – that He said it was His will they be healed. I reminded Him of how Jacob wrestled with Him for His blessing. Genesis 32:26, “Jacob panted, "I will not let you go unless you bless me." Jacob prevailed winning his blessing that day. I likewise was going to wrestle with God until I got my blessing.
As I said, night after night I would lie in my bed reasoning with God thanking Him for all His promises and for all He did for us through Jesus. Every blessing was ours and Satan had no right and could not stop them from our lives. It seemed like this went on for a long time, but as I said, I was determined to wrestle with God for my promised blessing. I knew and know that faith in Him honors Him.
One day I noticed that I hadn’t had the symptoms of that disease for a long time – months. Praise God! That’s now been over 30 years ago. Come let us reason together!
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt