Summary: There is a positive side of doubt. When doubts push us to study and examine why we believe what we believe the searching can help us grow spiritually.
The Positive Side of Doubt
-How Doubts can help you grow spiritually-
I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried, the third day He rose from the dead, he ascended into heaven, and is seated on the right hand of God, the Father Almighty, whence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Christian Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
There is a positive side of doubt. When doubts push us to study and examine why we believe what we believe the searching can help us grow spiritually. Doubts are part of the very fabric of our lives. Down through the years experts of various fields have had their doubts.
Charles H Duell, U.S. Patent Office director, 1899 said, “Everything that can be invented has been invented.”
H.M. Warner, Warner Bros. Pictures said, “Who in the world wants to hear actors talk?”
Grover Cleveland, 1906, “Sensible and responsible women don’t want to vote.”
Lord Kelvin, president, Royal Society, 1895, “Heavier than air flying machines are impossible.”
The Michigan banker who advised Henry Ford’s lawyer not to invest in the new motor car company said, “The horse is her to stay, the automobile is only a novelty.”
Actor Gary Cooper said, “Gone with the Wind is going to be the biggest flop in Hollywood. I’m just glad it’ll be Clarke Gable who’s falling flat on his face and not me.”
Type the word “doubt” into the Google search engine and you’ll get approximately 13,600,000 hits.
Type the word “faith” and you’ll get 20,900,000 hits—faith wins over doubt.
As we look at the subject of doubt I want to look at an Old Testament prophet and a New Testament disciple and see how they dealt with doubt.
The Prophet Habakkuk battled doubt. Habakkuk 1:2-4 – “How long, O Lord, must I call for help? But you do not listen! ‘Violence!’ I cry, but you do not come to save. Must I forever see this sin and misery all around me? Wherever I look, I see destruction and violence. I am surrounded by people who love to argue and fight. The law has become paralyzed and useless, and there is no justice given in the courts. The wicked far outnumber the righteous, and justice is perverted with bribes and trickery.” (NLT)
Habakkuk is crying out, “God doesn’t care about my troubles. If God cared He would answer my prayer. God is silent. Where is God? The wicked are prospering while the righteous are suffering. Sinners are not being punished so why pray? God doesn’t do anything.
How do you deal with the silences of God? When life no longer smiles upon you where do you turn? If God is a loving God why is all this happening?
Philip Yancey in his book Where is God When It Hurts, tells how friends gave wrong counsel to a friend suffering from Hodgkin’s disease. Cobalt treatment caused the body of the twenty plus year old to deteriorate.
A leader from her church visited her and told her to reflect on what God was trying to teach her through suffering. The church member told her: “There must be something in your life displeasing to God. You must have stepped out of God’s will. Listen to what God is trying to tell you.
Another scatterbrained lady, a cheerleader to the sick visited her. She brought her flowers, sand hymns, quoted happy psalms and talked about happy things to drive out any suffering with her cheer and good will.
Another lady stopped by to pray for her. She told the young lady that sickness is never God’s will. The sickness in her body was the work of the devil. “You must have enough faith to believe that you will be healed. Faith can move mountains and that includes Hodgkins’ disease.”
Another lady from her church came to see her and told her that she must learn to praise God for everything. You must pray, “God I love you for making me suffer like this. It is Your will. In all things, including this, I give thanks.”
Another leader in the church told her that she was chosen by God to participate in the sufferings of Christ.
The Lord gave Habakkuk His answer in verses 5, “Look at the nations and be amazed! Watch and be astounded at what I will do! For I am doing something in your own day, something you wouldn’t believe even if someone told you about it. “