Summary: Today we consider the cause of our doubts regarding God and how we respond to these doubts.
1. Have you ever questioned if God is really there? Or have you wondered if God is really the God we worship - the God who reveals Himself in this book, the Bible? If He really is all that powerful and good?
2. Sometimes we look around us and see what is happening in world or in our own lives, and we can so easily start to question or doubt if God is there or even He really is in charge of things.
3. Some of the deepest struggles we can have as Xns are struggles with doubt.
4. To help us understand our doubts and how to deal with them, we look at the words of someone plagued with doubts about 3,000 years ago.
5. What amazed me about His words was that they could have been spoken by you or me today, for they paint an accurate picture of the world in which we live.
1. Asaph was a leader of one of David’s levitical choirs.
a. Levites assisted the priests in their responsibilities (Num 3:5-9, 16:9)
- by preparing grain offerings and the show bread
- by purifying all the holy instruments used in the Temple
by singing praises to the Lord at the time of the morning and evening offerings
- by assisting the priests with burnt offerings on sabbaths and feast days
b. Asaph is looking back over a time of doubt in his life.
2. Doesn’t start as an expression of doubt but rather a strong statement of faith. "Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart"
3. But he almost lost it, his feet almost slipped out from under him He did not start out with the intent of doubting God’s goodness and fairness, it just happened, like waking up one day and discovering that close walk with God is gone.
4. Yet if we look back we can see that there are usually some things that have been building up in us that have led to our doubts
a. 2 reasons for Asaph - both given in vs. 3
i. The reality of the word around Him - he saw the prosperity of the wicked. Seems to be an apparent contradiction between Scripture which says that God is good to the pure in heart and that He punishes the wicked.
ii. "I ENVIED the arrogant." The problem not out there but in here - in our hearts - in how we respond to the world around us.
a. Doubts can reveal a desire to be like the godless world, a desire to share in their riches rather than in the
fullness of God’s riches.
5. How do we deal with this envy and the doubts that come from it.
a. Three ways we can respond:
i. vs. 15 "If I had said, "I will speak thus," I would have betrayed your children."
a. He could have walked away from his faith and expressed his doubts as being the truth - to publicly deny God’s
goodness and maybe even His existence. This would have done him no good and it would have betrayed God’ children - those with whom he had shared his faith.
ii. (vs. 16) He tried to understand it by meditating or thinking about concerns .
a. Didn’t work - vs, 22 says that he was senseless and ignorant. Easy to get on a train of thought and to get stuck on the track.
iii. Right way to deal with our doubts as we see in vs. 17. To get insight and understanding Asaph had to come into the sanctuary of God - to come and hear His voice and seek His presence. As Peter sinking in the waves we have to look to Jesus, to turn our eyes upon Jesus and look full in His wonderful face.
6. When we look upon Him and come to Him:
a. We see horror of cross - the reality of sin - that the wicked will have their day. It is better to suffer on earth and rejoice in heaven that to rejoice on earth and suffer in hell. They may feel secure but they are really on slippery ground.
b. Asaph also sees himself a little different - perhaps he was not as pure in heart as he thought. (vs. 21-2). He acknowledges that his spirit was embittered and ignorant.
7. Things happen to us - we loose a loved one, we are sinned against we get hard hearts, and we let those feelings take over so much that we loose perspective.
a. As we come into His light He lets us see things as they really are.
8. Where are you? What are your struggles? What makes you question God? May you get insight of Asaph after his struggles
9. May we be humbled before almighty God and confess Him vs. 23- 28.