“But Jesus replied, ‘Why are you so afraid? You surely don’t have much faith.’” Matthew 8:26
Doubt is a feeling which comes into the life of the follower of Christ quite often in his/her life. It can even overwhelm that person, make him turn to the other side of Truth, and make him turn away from his Savior. I have seen many of my Christian friends who have left their faith and turned to atheism because of this very fact, doubt.
Doubt is the most normal, human feeling. If you don’t doubt, it means that you’re blindly following a book called the Bible. Indeed, Christianity is based on blind faith, but that doesn’t mean that we should be robots and just believe without even understanding. God gave us a brain which has immense capacity. We must use it for critical thinking. If you don’t doubt, how will you make progress in your walk with Jesus? If you don’t doubt, many people will come to you with arguments which prove your faith wrong. You’ll just say, ‘I know Christ’s message is the true one.’ But after a while, trust me, you’ll have enough of believing when everything tells you not to.
Let me tell you something interesting, that you might know. If I tell you that there was a God-man back in ancient Egyptian mythology named Horus worshipped since 2200 BC, that was conceived by a virgin, had twelve disciples, his birth was announced by angels, three solar deities were guided to his birthplace by a star. This God-man raised from the dead someone called Lazarus. He was baptized at the age of 30. He walked on water, cast out demons and much more. For your sake, I’ll stop now. This story was in circulation much before Jesus came on Earth. Well, I don’t know about you, but Jesus’ story suddenly seems to me less original, just copied from somewhere else. There are plenty of stories like this out there. So if we don’t keep our path straight, think for ourselves, we would just fall in the depths of doubt and at last turn from the only thing that gives us reason to live, Christ’s death on the cross.
As the philosophers of the Enlightenment era said, we must always re-question our faith in order that we might advance in our Faith and walk with Christ. George Herbert, a Welsh priest has said, “He that knows nothing doubts nothing”. Jesus knows that we will doubt. He even says it so many times in the Bible. Tor instance in Luke 24:38 we read, “Why are you so frightened? Why do you doubt?” It’s one of our many flaws as human beings. We can’t completely trust in a God who we have never seen.
However, Christ explicitly says that doubt is not healthy. Doesn’t He know that we are human and that the very act of believing is already hard enough for us?
He even points out the difficult aspect of faith in Matthew 21:21,”If you have faith and don’t doubt, I promise that you can…tell this mountain to get up and jump into the sea, and it will.” Of course, no one is going to make mountains fall into the sea, but Jesus says it in a hyperbolic way to insist on how hard it is for us to have faith as big as even a mustard seed.
Let’s go back now to our original verse. It’s taken from the story of Jesus feeding the five thousand. So more than five thousand people were sitting on the grass, and Jesus asks his disciples in Matthew 14:16, “They don’t have to leave. Why don’t you give them something to eat?” At that moment, I’m sure
everyone thought that Jesus had gone mad, how can we feed all these people, he can’t be serious? They even rebuke Jesus in Mark 6:37, “don’t you know that it would take almost a year’s wages to buy all of these people something to eat?” Of course, Jesus knew that, but he still insisted that they bring what they had.
Once again, Jesus wanted to test their faith, and once again, the disciples fell short of God’s amazing presence.
Indeed, in the Great Commission, Jesus commands us to go to all nations and spread His Word. Do we sometimes fall short of God’s glory, thinking that what He asks us to do is too much for us, mere human beings? God doesn’t expect much of us, only “five loaves of bread, and two fish” he asked from his disciples, which was nothing to feed five thousand people. He only asks from us what we can give to him. He wants us to humble ourselves so He can use our weakness, only if we let him and let go of our pride. As the Lord says in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “My power is strongest when you are weak”. Are we ready to leave this doubt far away and submit ourselves to Him with true obedience so that the Potter can mold us in whatever shape He wants to, in whatever work that He has in store for us?
Give God a chance to show you His Glory. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you every day so that He can help you overcome Doubt.
I believe that we will never be able to put Doubt aside, we are human. Furthermore, the more we put our trust in God, the more we will feel blessed in His presence, and do not forget, with only twelve disciples Jesus changed the world, imagine what He can accomplish through you.