December 19, 2020

Do Christians Doubt?

Mark 9:14-32

“‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.” Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

—  Mark 9:23-24

In a sermon on today’s text I said that sometimes even Christians have their doubts. The next day I received a phone call from someone who told me I was wrong. A Christian, he said, does not doubt.

But, of course, some Christians do doubt. Some of us have even said the same thing that the boy’s father said to Jesus in the story we have read today: “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

In this Advent season we are asked to believe that the baby born in a stable in the town of Bethlehem was the Son of God, born not of an earthly father but conceived by the Holy Spirit. We are asked to believe that this child would be the Savior of the world and that through him we can have eternal life. There are so many things we are asked to believe, and many of them go against human reasoning.

Most of us have moments in our lives when our faith is weak. Some situations in life can make us doubt. Even John the Baptist, who once boldly said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” began to doubt when he was in prison (John 1:29; Luke 7:18-23).

When doubts come into your life, talk about it to a Christian friend, and tell the Savior. Read the Bible, ask Jesus to remove your doubts, and be assured that everything you’ve learned about God is true. He is able and willing to strengthen you.

Lord in heaven, we too believe, but sometimes we doubt. Please help us overcome our unbelief. Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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