What To Do When You Have Doubts About God4 min read
A number of the disciples of Jesus had nicknames. John and James were nicknames “Sons of Thunder” (sounds like a movie right?), Simon was nicknamed Peter, and there was also another Simon AKA The Zealot. But there is one of the disciples who got a nickname which was not included in the Bible. Actually, he got the nickname after the Bible was put together. In case you haven’t gotten the name of the disciple by now, let me help you out. It’s Doubting Thomas.
Yep, he’s the guy who got a nickname because he really wasn’t sure the resurrection of Jesus Christ happened. Growing up, he was always one of the fall-guy when it came to telling people why it wasn’t a good thing to doubt.
I don’t know about you but I think I can relate to Thomas. I mean, he had spent the last 3 years of his life following Jesus, believing that Jesus was going to bring about a new “Davidic” kingship order. I bet he could just picture it – Jesus would lead the charge with an army and take out the mighty Roman oppressors.
And then this happened. Jesus got taken out without even a fight. He just went and allowed himself to be crucified. Now the rest of the guys were saying Jesus had risen from the dead. If He had the power to rise up from the dead, why didn’t He stop the whole crucifixion and take over from the Romans? Why?
The truth is that all these are logical thoughts. Unlike what some pastors say, I think it’s actually OK to doubt. In my study of the bible, I think I can relate to two forms of doubt – the doubt that disbelieves in spite of evidence and the doubt that wants evidence to believe.
The Pharisees in the bible fit into the category of those who choose to doubt in spite of whatever evidence that Jesus offered. They always found a way to explain it away. The miracles, the teachings – he could not be God-sent because He hangs out with “sinners” or He can’t be right because He calls Himself the Son of God.
I know they say don’t judge a book by its cover but these guys took it to the extreme. They just threw the book and its content into the river – no need to test it. Jesus was just plain bad news to them. No matter the signs, they had chosen not to believe Him.
On the other hand, we find that many saints over the ages have experienced the doubt that wants evidence to believe. Abraham had to see “stars” before he believed the promise of a child, Moses had to be given miracles before he believed that he was the deliverer to lead God’s people out of Egypt, Ananias had to be told the vision for Saul’s future before he agreed to go and pray for him and let’s not forget the guy who started this whole conversation, “Doubting Thomas” had to touch and feel Jesus before he believed in the resurrection.
So what do you do when you have these doubts? Do what these guys did – tell God about it when you pray. Yep, tell God that you are having doubts about Him or His promise but want to believe. I bet you He’ll find a way to convince you.
We forget that God likes to go through all the trouble of addressing the doubts of His children. Can you believe He let Lazarus die just so He could give His disciples another reason to believe? [So he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. And for your sakes, I’m glad I wasn’t there, for now you will really believe. Come, let’s go see him.” John 11:14 & 15 NLT].
They didn’t ask for it but He just did it. Can you imagine what He would now do to get you to believe if you tell Him about your doubts?
So no matter the doubts you have, the only place to address them is with God Himself. And who knows you might just get a visit from God in a way you never expected just to get your doubts out of the way.