Question: (History shows that) God’s people invariably fail. Can I trust Him and the church?
Answer: Inherent in this question are really two concerns! First is the undeniable truth of the absolute falleness and imperfection found in each of us. The second is: does this sad truth of our falleness deny the perfect, unchanging faithfulness of the God of the bible? The short answer is absolutely not!!
When I struggle with the unfaithfulness and broken promises I find in myself (and other believers!), I have learned from many cherished disciplers and mentors in the faith to fix my gaze upon the character of God! While the “attributes of God” are limitless and innumerable, to best answer this question we should consider two (2) of His attributes:
1.) “His Faithfulness”
2.) “His Providence”
“God is not a man that He should lie; Nor a son of man that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do it?Or has He spoken,and will He not make good?” (Num.23:19)
God cannot be unfaithful. Unlike you and I , it is impossible for Him to not fulfill every promise He has made. His nature is incapable of falsehood, inconsistency or deception.
So the promises He has made to everyone (believer and unbeliever) will be perfectly fulfilled. His promise to build His church(Matt.16:18) is certain because of His unique ability to work all things together for our good and His glory. This ability or attribute is called his “providence.”
The sweep of the Old Testament history demonstrates that God is faithful (and infinitely able!) to bring about His desired purpose in spite of the rebellion and disobedience of the nation of Israel!
“the mind of man plans His way but the Lord directs His steps” (Prov.16:9)
So, Scripture,history and the nature and character of God call us to trust in the Lord,His Word and His ability to work through fallen people and a fallen world. God’s faithfulness, which knows and includes the failures of man, will bring about His perfect plan for His people, His Church and His creation.