Many conjectures and assertions made in sermons don't really have all that much to do with what is plainly written in the pages of Scripture but rather are about displaying the alleged piety of the pulpit expositor.
It was contended in a sermon that a dour Christian is one that is guilty of idol worship.
Could not the same thing be said about the individual that exudes a pretense of happiness at all times?
From this kind of flippant response to human suffering and emotion, one wonders if such a position stems more from simply not wanting to deal with those grappling with these kinds of struggles.
This observational conjecture is supported by the common exegetical insistence that the Christian can't ask why even when initially confronted with a seemingly overwhelming event or reality as a way to come to grips with what one is enduring.
As evidence, the pastor in the course of this sermon insisted that since Jesus did not lose His joy upon the cross, so neither should we.
But was that not the moment and place from which Christ vocalized, “My God, My God, WHY hast thou forsaken me?”
This preacher, that obviously hasn't been sick a day in his life, remarked that God has extended us the privilege of suffering.
Therefore to desire otherwise as expressed through the articulation of “Why”, the pastor continued, would be a form of idolatry by wanting something that God did not for us.
So by that definition, does that mean it is a sin to shift position when your foot falls asleep or to pass gas when one feels gastronomically bloated?
But if responding to these kinds of symptoms is the body's way of maximizing physical health, perhaps asking questions is more the soul's attempt in a similar fashion to process facts and data that often on the surface until profounder reflection seem to contradict many of the things that we have been told or taught about God often by those claiming to rank among His foremost spokesman.
Frederick Meekins is an independent theologian and social critic. Frederick holds a BS in Political Science/History, a MA in Apologetics/Christian Philosophy from Trinity Theological Seminary, and a PhD. in Christian Apologetics from Newburgh Theological Seminary.