Gospel Relevance

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What God Really Wants from You

I’ll never forget what D.A. Carson once said during a lecture.

Photo Credit: stocksnap.io

Photo Credit: stocksnap.io

I was on campus at Covenant Theological Seminary. I was there for a visit, and part of my visit experience was to attend chapel and a lecture. Covenant usually has a local pastor or student speak. But this time, they managed to convince D.A. Carson to come. I had no idea of this when I scheduled my visit, but was thrilled when I learned he’d be speaking.

Carson’s topic for his lecture was on suffering. He gave (I believe) six points for Christians to cling to during hard seasons. After the fourth point, he made a comment in passing that stuck with me:

God wants your trust more than he wants your understanding.

That’s coming from perhaps the best New Testament Scholar alive. That’s coming from a guy who spends most of his day in study. That’s coming from a guy who has spent most of his adult life pursuing understanding. 

What God really wants from you, according to Carson, more than your understanding, is your trust.

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Here was Carson’s point: amid the trials and tribulations of life, God wants you to trust his character more than understand everything that’s going on.

Yes, understanding the Bible is extremely important.

Yes, every Christian should strive to increase in knowledge of God.

Yes, reading should be a high priority in the Christian life.

But on your quest for knowledge, what God wants from you is your trust. Not separate from understanding, but in conjunction with it.

So that brings it back to you.

Will you trust God with your future?

Will you trust God with your finances?

Will you trust God when everything seems to be working against you?

That’s God’s call on your life for this week, this month, this year. Trust — that’s his call on your life until he calls you home.

Will you choose to trust him?


About David Qaoud

David Qaoud (MDiv, Covenant Theological Seminary) is associate pastor of Bethesda Evangelical Church in St. Louis, Missouri, and founder of gospelrelevance.com. His work has appeared on The Gospel Coalition, For the Church, and Banner of Truth. He lives in St. Louis with his wife and two children. Learn more.

7 Replies

  1. An old Christian, he was 80+ and 70 years a Christian, once told me, the hardest thing is to trust God. Obeying is much easier, but trust is difficult!

    1. Word to the wise from the wise. It can be difficult. But it’s always worth it.

  2. Eric Skwarczynski

    I wouldn’t be disappointed at all if I walked into a chapel service and got surprised with the news D.A. Carson was speaking! lol

    1. Dude, it was awesome! Got to speak with him afterward and we discussed theology, preaching, and ministry. Such a great experience.

  3. Heather

    Depths of trust, it seems to be the last step into the depths where your head becomes submerged, when you have to fight the sheer panic in order to obey. That level once achieved gives us the most rewards. Total reliance. What he said seemed to have rung in your Spirit. You don’t mention what your hold out on trust was that made his lecture so significant for you. Why it changed your life? My hold out is my own failings, that He can work them for good and I believe there is still more depths to my trust level with my children.

    1. Hey Heather – Good point. Overall, I just felt more encouraged to trust God more with every year of my life. Like Carson, I’m an avid reader (but not as much as him!). So I felt doubly encouraged to hear such a statement from a guy who puts a high priority on study.