Doubt Assails Us All
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is double-minded, unstable in all his ways. -James 1:5-8
The universal malady of mankind? Doubt! Especially when it comes to believing God, doubt unfortunately raises its ugly head. Whether total rejection of Him, complete ignorance of Him, or just struggling obedience of Him, it all comes down to whether we believe God or not. From Satan’s initial claim, “Did God really say…?, a question repeated over and over in men’s minds, to the thought, “I simply don’t care what God says, it all is the result in one form or another of doubt!
James minces no words about what he thinks of doubt and doubters; he says it is the character flaw which defines a “double-minded [man, who is] unstable in all his ways. James knows! He himself doubted his own brother, who just happened to be the Lord; that is, he doubted Him until his brother stood before him, after He had been put to death. The resurrected Lord convinced his brother, James, that He was who He claimed to be. All He ever said was true, every word of it, but it took His resurrection to convince James.
Yet lies abound in the air of this world every bit as much as carbon dioxide. Practically, as often as man expels carbon dioxide with his breath, a lie escapes. This is the very reason we must ask God continuously for wisdom! Is what man says always to be believed over what God has said?
Doubt is the result of not believing the truth or turning a deaf ear to it. So, what is truth? Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. Truth is found in Jesus, and He has told us such; both the truth of creation, such as 2+2=4, as well as the truth of what happens to us after death. As Colossians says, Jesus is all in all. In a supernatural way, all truth finds its source in Him.
So, how can we eschew doubt? How do we resist doubting God? James says to ask God for wisdom, while at the same time continuing to believe all He has said. James then goes on to say that if you believe God, actions must follow. “Faith without works is dead, he writes. Not acting on faith in what God has said is just another way of doubting Him. You can say all day long, “I believe what God says is true, but if there is not an obedience, if there are no deeds which follow faith and hearing, do you really believe Him?
This is the question we all must ask ourselves. Do we doubt, or do we believe God and His Son whom He has sent? If you do, you must show it by your deeds, by the continuing transformation of your life into a God-fearing and believing man or woman who acts out their faith concretely in everyday life.
“How firm a foundation, you saints of the Lord, is laid for your faith in His excellent Word! What more can He say than to you He has said, to you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?
(1st verse of anonymous hymn, “How Firm A Foundation, 1787)
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