What to do About Doubt

about doubt

What to do about doubt

John 20:24-25

  1.  Realize that Everything Takes Faith

People see stuff you dont see

  • 24 Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.”
  • life being what it is, when we are not in the immediate vicinity, we have to take what other people say at face value. Or, we don’t
  • in this instance, the Disciples were already with Jesus, but there is this Guy, Thomas who doesn’t seem to agree with what his brothers are saying about what they have seen
  • This where we get the term “doubting Thomas”
  • So They say “we’ve seen the Lord” – Thomas didnt’ see it-he needs to take it by Faith
  • There is no reason to question their assertion. These guys are either in complete cahoots with each other, or they are telling the truth- but its clear- Thomas “was not there when Jesus came”
  • This is true of alot of our life- often times there are things that happen and we are not there, or we didn’t see it, and we wonder, did that really happen? Can I really believe that?
  • When you’re not an eyewitness to something, sometimes its hard to believe it
  • Now- that being said when I was kid, they used to say, You can’t believe everything you read. Nowadays, I want to say, you can’t believe everything that you see- they can DR up any video with a desktop computer- But even now- you have to take everything by FAITH
  • But here’s what I love- These disciples- they want to proclaim what THEY have seen- they want their friend to experience what THEY have experienced- they want HIM to know that Jesus DID come back and that he IS who he says that it he is
  • But Thomas- he doesn’t buy what his friends are saying- even thought he’s supposed to take it by Faith
  • Here’s what happens when you dont take it by Faith
  1.  Doubt creeps in
  • So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.”
  • Now, this is expected a little bit- For Thomas to see with his own two eyes that Jesus did in fact come back from the grave
  • He’s from Missouri- the “show me” state
  • Here’s what I wonder though- what happened to Thomas, that at this point, he doesn’t believe his brothers?
  • You know, it wasn’t too long ago that Thomas was there when Lazarus had died.
  • John 11:16 Then Thomas, who is called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with Him.”
  • Now- I think that this verse here- shows Thomas heart even before this- that He had seen Lazarus dead, and  didn’t believe that Jesus could raise Lazarus from the dead
  • Thomas didn’t have the keenest sense of what Jesus was doing or what he was capable of
  • In John 14, Thomas asked Jesus where he was going- Thomas was the person to whom he said “I am the way the truth and the life, and no one comes to the father except through me”
  • He’s a doubter. He’s a wonderer. He’s a skeptic
  • There’s always one in the group- People who no matter what you bring up as an idea, they want to shoot it down with the reason why it wont work
  • They’ve been trained to believe that their only contribution is criticism
  • I kind of like that a little bit- Let me tell you why I like it- Even though he appeared to have doubts, he still stuck around
  • Right now- there are people that are here that are unsure about who God is, and what he is capable of
  • Maybe Thomas was just following the crowd. Maybe he was just going along. Maybe he was half way convinced, but wasn’t all the way in.
  • I get it- There are still things that I have doubts about. There are still things that I am not sure of.
  • I’m guessing that through the scriptures that we can agree that Thomas wasn’t too sure either
  • Thats great- because there are things that I am not completely sure of in my life and spiritual life
  • Most people doubt
  • Is God real? Does he answer prayer? Are Miracles real? Is the Bible Real? Specific Stories in the Bible?
  • Doubts are part of humanity I think- Did I make the right decision? Will this happen? What happens if it doesnt?
  • Doubting doesn’t make you abnormal-When You believe God for Big Things- its hard
  • Did you know that God doesn’t want you to have doubts though?
  • God can handle your doubts, but he doesn’t want you to have doubts
  • Jesus said Matthew 21:21 So Jesus answered and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but also if you say to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ it will be done.
  • James 1: 6-8 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
  • Here’s what you should do when you have doubts though-
  1. Trust in Jesus
  • 26 And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” 27 Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.”
  • Watch what happens here- Jesus speaks his peace over the situation right away- “Peace to YOU”
  • When you’re in a doubting time- when you’re in a “I’m not sure time” Trust in Jesus until he shows up- which he will- and wait for his peace
  • Doubting Thomas not so much doubting anymore- why? He was able to put his fingers in the holes of Jesus hands and side himself
  • Now- I’m not saying every time that Jesus in the flesh is going to show up and let you stick your fingers in the holes- But Jesus WILL show UP
  • Heard a great story this week from a friend- Her friend was sharing about the loss of her son- he had died- she wasn’t a church goer, didn’t even read her Bible- Called out to Jesus- he came in- and hugged her
  • When you trust in Jesus through your doubts- and turn your doubt into FAITH HE SHOWS UP
  • 1 John 3:22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.
  • Child of God- stop that doubt right now- place your full faith and assurance in God’s ability to do what he said he would do
  • Now- This isn’t a lottery prayer, a bring granny back from the dead prayer.
  • The truth is that those aren’t the worrisome prayers of the troubled heart
  • ITs Am I really forgiven? YES! If you’ve recieved Jesus you ARE forgiven you ARE
  • when he shows up
  1. Give HIM the Glory
  • v28 And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”
  • All of this happens and Thomas sees enough to PROVE to him through his DOUBT and he says  “MY Lord and my GOD”
  • What a change of heart from “I’ll die with Lazarus”-
  • See some people have that mentality- “i’ll just go to hell with my friends and party there” there is no party there folks. You will not be in charge.  It will not be fun. There will be no escape
  • You WANT to go to Heaven- You WANT to be there- and if you have doubts, and Jesus is proving to you that he is REAL
  • Give him the Glory! Don’t second guess it- don’t say “well, let me see that again”
  • How many miracles do you have to see to get you praise his name?
  • Isn’t the fact that you’re still alive enough? Didn’t he SAVE you? Didn’t he FORGIVE You?
  • We should be GIVING him our PRAISE and GLORY
  • Isaiah 12:5 Sing to the Lord, For He has done excellent things; This is known in all the earth.
  • Hebrews 13:15 Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.
  • here’s what I should say to people before I pray for them- “are you going to give God the glory? or yourself? Are you going to keep serving God after he shows up?
  • People put God to tests all the time, and then he does it Job, health, family, kids, money etc
  • Prayed for this couple- God gave them both what they wanted in SPADES- no praise to God
  • WILL YOU GIVE HIM THE GLORY? If not, I’m not going to pray for you!
  1. Believe without seeing
  • 29 Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
  • Jesus tells Thomas that he believes because he has seen Jesus- and Jesus goes a step further
  • Blessed are those who have not YET seen and have YET believed
  • How awesome is that- Those who don’t even SEE the body of Jesus are BLESSED because they believed without SEEING
  • Thats YOU- You may have SEEN some miracles- you may have SEEN some cool stuff- but Jesus says if you beleive without seeing- you’re BLESSED
  • I love that- you dont even have to SEE to BELIEVE and you’re BLESSED
  • Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
  • Here’s a thought- why don’t you come to point in your faith where you no longer have to put God to a weekly test and you just believe him through it all no matter what?
  • I’ll never understand- in 25 years I’ve never had anyone track me down for church, bible, my walk, my passion for God. No calls, letters, “lets go find matt” moments- full steam ahead for JC
  • I’m hoping Thomas beleived and moved on- Hopefully a year later he wasn’t found hanging out at the local mall and his friends saw him and he decided that he fell away
  • NO- That should have been MORE than enough to sustain him for LIFE
  • Matt 12: 39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.
  • The sign of Jonah? Repentance! Returning to God! Jesus condemned people who had MORE evidence than the people of Nineveh and THEY came to GOD
  • How much more powerful is it to see Jesus move NOW when he’s not here in bodily form?
  1. don’t give into doubt and Believe
  • 30 And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.
  • Folks- this is the whole point of the Book of John- The miracles, the stories, the Holy Spirit, the Baptisms, all of it- one reason
  • That you would believe and have life
  • Why doubt? Have faith in Christ! Its such a better life! Living life with Jesus is the GOOD life
  • John 10:10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
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