“God can deal with our doubts”
“Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!.” – Mark 9:24
Have you ever watched those “Epic Fail” videos. Videos that show scene after scene of people doing dumb things and getting hurt? We watch these videos, and I always wonder, “What were they thinking??” Do they not have any sense in their head? Did they ever doubt that this was a good idea and say wait a minute let’s think about that?
I think these videos show easily that doubt can be a good thing. It gets us to think and make better decisions. Doubt is merely the process by which we ask questions and take something we are unsure about and investigate it to make sure it stands under scrutiny.
But is it ok to have doubt in our faith? Many times, we tell people they should not doubt in their faith. They need to just believe or pray more or read their Bible more. We say, “Out with doubts,” and treat it as if it is not allowed. But, is that how Jesus treated doubt?
In the gospel of John chapter 9 is a great example of a man who had doubts and Jesus worked with his doubts to help him believe. I’m going to look at a few passages in the story and make a few comments.
John 9:1, 6-12
This blind man does not really know who Jesus is or where Jesus is. The blind man puts distance between him and Jesus by saying, “the man called Jesus.” John wants to make it very clear that this blind man knew nothing about Jesus. He did not doubt in his faith, he had no faith at all!
We start to see a progression in the story where this man calls Jesus a prophet. Prophets were revered men and mouthpieces of God and the blind man recognizes that.
His parents were afraid and did not want to believe. The blind man parents and the Pharisees are a contrast in the story. The man’s parents were afraid of the consequences of belief.
Jesus finds this man and reveals himself to him and the man believes and worships!
This man was open minded and was willing to listen and learn. This man had doubt and Jesus was willing to deal with this man’s doubt. He let him figure some things out on his own and helped him in other areas. Jesus never said you have to believe 100% or else. Jesus has always been willing to work with people and reveal himself to people who are searching.
Part of everyone’s faith journey there will be doubt! Far from being a bad thing, doubt is good, it helps us question, think critically, make our faith our own. When we go through a period of doubt we always come out on the other side stronger than when we went in.
Doubt is the process by which we have taken things we have heard to be true and investigate to see if we are going to believe it ourselves. Or it is the process where we don’t know much about something and so we learn more to evaluate it’s validity.
We have treated doubt like the plague, we think it is hazardous to our faith and we think if we have it we have failed, and that is not true! “God is willing to deal with our doubt!”
I love the story in Mark 9 about a man with a sick daughter. He comes to Jesus and asks Jesus to heal her and Jesus asks if he believes and the man says, “Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!.” – Mark 9:24
And Jesus healed this man’s daughter. This should be our prayer when we doubt. Jesus I believe, help me with my unbelief. And we have nothing to fear because “God will deal with our doubts” and truth is on our side. If we seek truth, it will lead us to Jesus.