The Nature of Belief
There was a time when “I believe” as a ceremonial declaration of faith meant, and was heard as meaning: “Given the reality of God, as a fact of the universe, I hereby proclaim that I align my life accordingly, pledging love and loyalty.” A statement about a person’s believing has now come to mean, rather, something of this sort: “Given the uncertainty of God, as a fact of modern life, so-and-so reports that the idea of God is part of the furniture of his mind.” — Wilfred Cantwell Smith, Faith and Belief
Until the 17th century, the latter definition wasn’t even an option. Now, in the 21st, the former has all but vanished. But if that’s the case, then the acceptance of a proposition as true was never in the biblical authors’ minds when they wrote.
Love, loyalty, and alignment of life… What if that were what we all meant by belief in God?