Barnabas Bulletin ~ 0156
DOUBTS AND DOUBTING
Recently as I was reading James Chapter 1 again, I was struck by what the Scripture has to say on the power of doubts; of doubting God’s Word and promises. It says: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, Who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts (“uncertainty about the truth, fact, or existence of something; lack of belief in or conviction about something” – Collins Dictionary) is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways” (v. 5-8).
I’m sure we all feel that we need more wisdom, especially the God-kind of wisdom. Wisdom is “skilfulness, or the right application in applying knowledge”; it is knowing how and what to do with what we know. It is the action part of imparting knowledge. We are told to ask for it in faith.
- Faith is believing what God says more than what we think about it ~ in spite of the prevailing circumstances that we can feel or see.
The Bible clearly tells us that doubt is a robber of our getting things from God. Doubt puts a question mark where God puts an exclamation mark! One is very negative (doubts), and one is very positive (faith). We choose which one to believe ~ God or our doubts?
- Doubts make us double-minded.
For a Christian that makes us spiritual schizophrenics! When we entertain doubts about God’s positive word and promises, then we are actually robbing ourselves of seeing the God-factor come through for us. Our inward thoughts and doubts are actually much more dangerous than the opposition that we encounter outside of us in circumstances and the seen world, etc.
- That is why it is so important that Christians know their Bible, for the Bible gives us the mind of Christ and always confirms what God speaks to us.
If we do not know the principles of the Scriptures, then we have no foundation upon which to exercise faith. We are simply left in a world of doubts and hoping that things will work out right. This is not what a Christian is called to live like. We are called to be men and women of faith, for it is faith that pleases God ~ and without faith we cannot please God (Hebrews 11:6)
- We cannot have faith and be double-minded at the same time!
Over the years I have learned a huge lesson about obeying God and His Word. I have discovered that every time He speaks to me I have to demonstrate my faith to God by my acting upon what He asks of me. When I do that, then there is always someone (besides myself) blessed of God, and there is always a testimony that comes forth from my obedience. No action on my part tells God that I am doubting what He is asking of me. That is all the devil wants us to do ~ doubt what God says!
- Nothing happens in faith without an action of faith!
We are deceiving ourselves if we think that we can get all the answers from God by only praying without any practical, positive action that demonstrates we believe what God says more than anything else; more than my thoughts and circumstances; more than what other people say or think. We are first and foremost called to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, and a disciple is one who follows and obeys his Teacher (which is Jesus Christ).
Here is a big challenge to us from Jesus to His disciples (after He cursed the fig tree): And Peter, remembering, said to Him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree which You cursed is withered away.” So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt (“oppose, discriminate, hesitate, be partial, stagger, waver” – Strong’s) in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatsoever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe (“to adhere to, trust, rely on” – Young’s) that you receive them, and you will have them” (Mark 11:21-24). Jesus makes Himself very clear, don’t you think? We need to meditate more on what He has said.
Jesus Christ was (and is) always very positive in His declarations. There is no hint of doubt in anything He says. It should also be that way for us who follow Jesus. Through our relationship with Him, and listening to His voice, we can have a faith that sees things happen beyond natural limitations. We can have wonderful things happen when we believe, confess and act upon what Jesus tells us ~ without doubting.
- Doubt kills faith!
Let us be big enough to face the challenges of these Scriptures so we can have the joy of seeing more of God’s answers and provision coming through for us in miraculous ways. Let us deal with the curse of doubt that robs us of so many positive and miraculous answers to our declarations.
- We are called to be men and women of faith ~ that faith which believes, obeys and pleases God!
May we all be activated more in faith and demonstrate to God that we truly do love, believe and obey Him! He desires only the very best for us! Do not doubt that ~ Rodney W. Francis.
Bible Reading: James 1 Mark 11
Prayer:“Dear Lord God, I come to You in the name of Jesus Christ Your Son, and I ask You to help me to break free from every form of doubt and unbelief that comes between You and me. I ask You to help me to have a much bigger believing heart so that I can demonstrate my faith and belief in You much more positively. Thank You, Lord Jesus, for hearing my prayer. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”