Tonight at Kairos, Mike spoke about the disciple Thomas, better known as Doubting Thomas for his famous (or infamous) statement that he would not believe that Jesus had risen from the dead until he could put his hands into the scars on Jesus’ hands and side. Yeah, that Thomas.
He gets a lot of grief for his doubt. Yet doubts can be a good thing. When you work through doubt, you end up with a faith that’s all your own. When you wrestle with questions, you grow up from believing in someone else’s faith to owning your own beliefs.
I think it’s good to question. It’s good to not believe everything at face value but know what you believe and why you believe it. It’s healthy to test what you hear from the pulpit against what the Bible says. In the book of Acts, the Bereans even checked what the Apostle Paul taught against Scripture — and he wrote a good deal of Scripture himself.
Timothy Keller, famous author and pastor, came up with a phrase I like. He calls it “doubting your doubt.” Basically, your doubt creates a narrative that you are inclined to choose over a Biblical truth or doctrine that seems hard at the time. To doubt your doubt is to question that narrative just as you questioned the original belief.
The Psalms are full of wrestling through doubt and questions. David and the other psalmists aren’t afraid to ask God the hard questions and to process the complex emotions that come from unmet expectations. Usually, they come to a point where they restate their trust in God based on a history of faithfulness and stedfast love.
Doubting can be a good thing if it drives you to God with the questions and compels you to remain at His feet until He gives answers — or more likely He gives more revelation of Himself, which is infinitely better.