The Temptation to Doubt

For Christians, it seems the greatest virtue we are called upon to exhibit most often is faith.
The entire hope of our salvation – even salvation itself is founded on faith.
We must believe in and for things which we can see not, we must have faith to carry us through to our goal, and each day we live here one earth we must have faith to please our Lord God.
His Word says all this over and over.
Probably the greatest call to faith is this; “for without faith it is impossible to please Him.”
“Take no thought what ye shall eat, what ye shall drink or where withal ye shall be clothed”
The bare necessities of life.
Jesus Himself says, “O ye of little faith! Take no thought!”
To everyone who came to Him, seeking healing, salvation, or comfort while He was on earth, Jesus always – always – required a statement of faith.
To the father with the demon possessed son, “If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.”
The lepers in Matthew 8 declared their faith before He asked, “Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.” And immediately Jesus healed him, “I will; be thou clean.”
To the blind man in Chapter 9; “Believe ye that I am able to do this?” “Yea, Lord” and he touched their eyes, “According to your faith be it into you.”
Faith played a most important role in all the healing Jesus did, with the exception perhaps of the casting out of devils – but even then, HE had to believe and have faith in His Father.
Faith, believing in those things we cannot see – in those things that seem impossible, in those things no one else thinks can possibly be real.
This is the basis of our whole existence as followers of Jesus Christ.
But.
Doubt.
Doubt is satan’s tool.
Doubt cripples our faith, indeed drowns it!
We can take a perfect example of this from Luke 8.
A ruler in the synagogue had come to Jesus seeking healing for his sick daughter – and only child.
Jesus agreed to come to his home and heal her.
But on the way, another miracle was preformed – simply by a woman touching the hem of his garment, her illness of12 years was immediately cured.
Imagine yourself in the ruler, Jairus’, place.
He had faith enough to come to Jesus to seek healing for his daughter.
How much more faith he must have attained at seeing someone healed on the way to his home!
But immediately after.
satan intervened and tried his utmost to stomp out Jairus faith – the faith that was key to the manifestation of God’s power through His Son.
A member of Jairus’ household came and brought news of his daughter’s death.
“Trouble not the Master.”
Don’t even bother Jesus any more. There’s no need bringing Him to your home; your daughter has already died.
Putting yourself in his position, what would such news do to you faith?
I know what it would do to mine.
It would crumble – completely.
But no.
Jesus spoke immediately, recognizing the enemy’s work, “Fear not; believe only, and she shall be made whole.”
And she was.
Not just healed, but brought back from the dead.
By the working of the Lord’s power – through faith.
Faith is so, so important.
Without faith, it is impossible to please Him.
But satan is standing ever near, with his darts of doubt – ready to pierce them to our very hearts if he may.
Oh, dear brothers and sisters, if Jesus were with us today and said, “Fear not, believe only.” Would we not do it? Would we not rally? Would we not feel emboldened by the Spirit of God Himself to step out and by faith march this path of Life?
He is here.
My friends, my brothers and sisters, He is here.
Within and without us.
Quietly whispering, in His still, small voice; “Fear not, believe only.”
Will we listen to Him?

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O Jesus….

O Jesus I have promised to serve Thee to the end;
Be Thou forever near me, my Master and my Friend:
I shall not fear the battle if Thou art by my side,
Nor wander from the pathway if Thou wilt be my guide.

O let me feel Thee near me the world is ever near;
I see the sights that dazzle the tempting sounds I hear:
My foes are ever near me around me and within;
But Jesus draw Thou nearer and shield my soul from sin.

O Jesus Thou hast promised to all who follow Thee
That where Thou art in glory there shalt Thy servant be
And Jesus I have promised to serve Thee to end
O be my Grace to follow my Master and my Friend.

John E. Bode