A series of locked doors

by Don Hartness

This week’s feature quote is from a favorite of mine: Oswald Chambers. Oswald was not widely recognized in his time. In my view, this is because he was simply ahead of his time.  Besides being keenly insightful about the terrain and signposts along The Way (an ancient description of the journey of faith, long before there was a church in Christ’s name), Chambers was devoted to Christ; not the church, theology, doctrine, dogma, religion, or anything else. His most famous work, My Utmost for His Highest, is one of the most recognized devotionals in all of Christian literature. It’s been a staple on my bed-stand since the earliest days of my journey.

I had the benefit of receiving an expanded version of this devotional some years ago.  Selected quotes and writings from his other lesser known writings are aligned with each entry from the devotional. One of those in particular is the quote for the week:

Everything a man takes to be the key to a problem is apt to turn out another lock. For instance, the theory of evolution was supposed to be the key to the problem of the universe, but instead it has turned out a lock. Again, the atomic theory was thought to be the key; then it was discovered that the atom itself was composed of electrons, and each electron was found to be a universe of its own, and that theory too becomes a lock and not a key. Everything that man attempts as a simplification of life, other than a personal relationship to God, turns out to be a lock, and we should be alert to recognize when a thing turns from a key to a lock. The creed Job held, which pretended to be a key to the character of God, turned out to be a lock, and Job realized that the only key to life is not a statement of faith in God, nor an intellectual conception of God, but a personal relationship to Him. God Himself is the key to the riddle of the universe, and the basis of things is to be found only in Him. If a man leaves out God and takes any scientific explanation as the key, he only succeeds in finding another lock.” – Oswald Chambers, “Baffled to Fight Better”, p.99