I used to wonder: Why doesn’t God provide a watertight proof for His own existence?
Why do I seem to be more concerned with proving God’s existence than God is concerned with proving God’s existence?
Why doesn’t Jesus appear to all doubters the way He appeared to Paul on the road to Damascus? Why didn’t Jesus come down off the cross when the Pharisees said, “If you’re the Christ come down.”
And why didn’t He appear resurrected before Herod, Pilate, and the Roman Senate instead of before weeping Mary standing outside His tomb?
Honestly, in the gospels, it’s like Jesus goes out of His way to make sure that no one has to believe, but that there’s always room for doubt.
Some places in Scripture say He would not (or could not) perform a sign; for they did not believe. But, in those sorts of instances, wouldn’t you think He would perform a sign so they would believe or could believe. But He acts like the sign might keep them from believing the way He wants them to believe.
As if: “Blessed are those who haven’t seen and yet believe.”
As if, that really matters to Him.
As if He wants us to believe because we really want to believe.
As if He wants us to WANT to believe.
Karl Barth wrote: “Note well: In all the Bible, of the Old and New Testament, not the slightest attempt is made to prove God.” And think about this: If you did prove God (in your personal laboratory), would that be God? And if you tried to prove God, what would you prove Him with? Reason?”
Scripture says that God is reason (logos is how you say it in Greek) so asking, “Is the existence of God reasonable” is asking, “Is the existence of Reason reasonable?” God is the Truth. So asking, “Is God true?” is asking “Is truth true?”
To ask: “Does God exist?” is to assume the answer. He is existence. He is “AMness”– “I AM that I AM.” So, how could I ever prove God? And yet . . . we all assume God. In fact, we have to assume God just to doubt God. You have to assume truth and existence just to ask: “Is it true that God exists?”
Actually, you have to assume God to doubt anything . . .
To doubt what’s true you have to believe in truth.
To doubt what’s real you have to believe in reality.
To doubt what’s good you have to believe in the good.
To doubt nothing, in this world, is to be inhuman.
To doubt everything is utterly insane, for then you have nothing to doubt with.
James 1:6 says, “The doubting man is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind, for that person must not suppose that a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways will receive anything from the Lord.”
Maybe, to doubt everything is to be the doubting man that James talks about; the doubting man makes doubt into his God. He doubts in order to protect himself from the Truth, in order to kill the Truth, which is to crucify Jesus, for Jesus is the Truth. He doubts because he doesn’t want to believe.
But if you doubt because you want to believe, that’s called “seeking the truth,” and Jesus is the Truth. He said, “Seek and you will find,” perhaps because you already have been found. That kind of doubt is a little truth in you seeking more truth because you want Truth; it’s wanting to believe the Truth. All that to say, maybe the real issue isn’t whether or not you’re smart enough to believe the Truth or good enough to believe the Truth, but do you want to believe the Truth?
Maybe God arranges all things so that you might doubt the Truth so that you wouldn’t have to believe the Truth, so that you might want to believe the Truth.
Maybe the Truth plays “hard to get” so we’d fall in love with the Truth the way the Truth has already fallen in love with us!
This devotional was prepared by Kimberly Weynen. It is primarily a compilation of excerpts from Peter Hiett’s sermon titled “Doubt.” You can read, watch, or listen to the full version here: Doubt