“Never ask a question. Keep quiet. Keep your troubles to yourself. Never go too in depth, you’ll only ask more questions. Just accept everything said from the pulpit. Go to church in your quiet little car, with your quiet little Bible, saying quiet little prayers, and singing quiet little songs; question nothing and you’ll be happy.
Ignorance is bliss and salvation.”
– Lies I believed.
Growing up, I was always told to never ask questions. They said that doubt was evil, that it was literally the devil lying to me, convincing me to rebel by being curious. They said that if I ever questioned, I was being disrespectful, ungodly, and just plain sinful. That asking questions somehow disproved my faith, or at least pushes me farther from God. But doubt isn’t unbelieving.
When I say the word “doubt,” I mean: when something is hard to believe.
C.S. Lewis said: “Now that I am a Christian, I do have moods in which the whole thing looks very improbable…”
If C.S. Freaking Lewis can say he has doubts, then can’t I? Doubt is apart of human nature. Job even doubted God. The guy goes on for like three chapters complaining to God and asking, “What the heck, Man? What did I even do?!?” He questions God and doubts that He will even relieve him of his pain. (Job 7:19-21) But then God is like, “Dude, chill, I got this.”
God recognizes our pain, our suffering, and the fact that we usually can’t explain it. We ask questions and God walks with us through it all, giving us the answer when we are ready. God isn’t angry when we doubt. Instead, if we allow Him, He helps us through it, coaxing us onto the correct path: directly to His Word.
Author Os Guinness said it like this: “It is not primarily a Christian problem, but a human problem…the root of our doubt is not in our faith but in our humanness.”
So the issue becomes, how will we deal with doubt? The fact that we doubt was, never has been, and never will be the problem, its just our response to it. Sadly, some Christians become afraid of their doubt, because of the way the church sometimes deals with it, and then apply it to Christianity as a whole, ultimately leaving the faith. This is needs to and can be prevented.
So, if you have doubts, great! You are human! Just don’t let the doubts eat you away. Confront them, deal with them, change them from doubts into unwavering faith. The greatest thing you can do when faced with doubt is READ THE BIBLE! You can’t afford to not read it anyway, but if doubt has crept into your heart, only reading God’s word can scare it away.
A few other things you can do are: ask questions, find a God-fearing mentor to help you through them, talk things out, don’t struggle alone (but don’t drag others down with you), and another big one: (drum roll please)
If we don’t have hope, doubt with kill us. Hope keeps us going and is translated quickly into faith. Cling to and never let go of the hope that God will reveal Himself to you.
So, yes, asking questions are okay. Doubt isn’t unbelieving. Think of it as yet another excuse to study and discover our ever-interesting and enthralling God.
*information learned from Ben Williams, at a Christian apologetics conference called Summit.