James 1:6 - Faith vs Doubt.
James 1:6: Faith vs Doubt.
James 1:6 (NJB) But the prayer must be made with faith, and no
trace of doubt, because a person who has doubts is like the waves
thrown up in the sea by the buffeting of the wind.
James 1:6 (TEV) But when you pray, you must believe and not
doubt at all. Whoever doubts is like a wave in the sea that is driven
and blown about by the wind.
James 1:6 (NLT) But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is
in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as
unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind.
The Dungeon of Doubt
Some time ago, I took my family to the bicycle store to
purchase a bike for 5-year-old Jenna. She picked out a shiny "Starlett"
with a banana seat and training wheels. And Andrea, age three,
decided she wanted one as well.
I explained to Andrea that she was too young. I told her she
was still having trouble with a tricycle and was too small for a
two-wheeler. No luck; she still wanted a bike. I explained to her that when
she was a bit older, she would get a bike, too. She just stared at
me. I tried to tell her that a big bike would bring her more pain
than pleasure, more scrapes than thrills. She turned her head and
Finally I sighed and said this time her daddy knew best. Her
response? She screamed it loud enough for everyone in the store to hear:
"Then I want a new daddy!"
Though the words were from a child's mouth, they carried an
Disappointment demands a change in command. When we don't
agree with the One who calls the shots, our reaction is often the same
as Andrea's-the same as John the Baptist's. "Is he the right one
for this job?" Or, as John put it, "Are you the one? Should we look
Andrea, with her three-year-old reasoning powers, couldn't
believe that a new bike would be anything less than ideal for her. From
her vantage point, it would be the source of eternal bliss. And from
her vantage point, the one who could grant that bliss was "sitting
on his hands."
I can't believe that God would sit in silence while a
missionary is kicked out of a foreign country or a Christian loses a
promotion because of his beliefs or a faithful wife is abused by an
unbelieving husband. These are just three of many items that have made their
way onto my prayer list - all prayers that seem to have gone
Rule of thumb: Clouds of doubt are created when the warm,
moist air of our expectations meets the cold air of God's silence.
If you've heard the silence of God, if you've been left
standing in the dungeon of doubt... you may learn, as John did, that the
problem is not as much in God's silence as it is in your ability to
hear. [Max Lucado Daily Devotional at maxlucado.com]
Whatever we do, we must not let any lurking doubts go
unchallenged. Pascal said: "Doubt is an unhappy state, but there is an
indispensable duty to seek when we are in doubt, and thus anyone who doubts
and does not seek is at once unhappy and in the wrong."
How do we go about resolving doubts? One way is to bring them
to the Lord in prayer and ask Him to help us overcome them. If
prayer does not dissolve them, apply the tactic which Nehemiah adopted:
"So we prayed to our God and stationed a guard" (Neh 4:9). Take a
verse of Scripture that is the opposite of your doubt and hold it in
the center of your mind, repeating it to yourself many times
throughout the day. Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones once said: "Have you realized
that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are
listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself? We must talk to
ourselves instead of allowing ourselves to talk to us!"
In listening to our doubts instead of talking to them, we
fall prey to the same temptation that caught Adam and Eve off guard
in the garden of Eden. The order of creation was stood on its head
when the first human pair allowed themselves to be dictated to by the
animal world (in the form of the serpent), when, in fact, they had been
put in a position to dictate to it.
Don't let your doubts dictate to you. Turn the tables and
dictate to them. Talk to them with words from the Word of God.
Father, help me never to be nonplussed, for in You there are
ways to overcome every problem. Drive the truth I have learned today
deeply into my spirit so that I may apply it whenever I am faced with
doubt. In Jesus' name. Amen. [Every Day With Jesus Bible with Selwyn
Hughes devotional re Heb. 4:12]
I woke up in one of those dreadful moods, already prejudiced
against the day ahead. I spoke to the Lord about it - asked Him to
jump-start my spirit and help my attitude shift. Nothing. I still felt like
the day was out to get me.
Sometime later, I decided to pull out some index cards with
Scripture verses on them, words that God had used to speak encouragement
to me at critical moments in various situations. I read through
each one, remembering the power I felt when they impacted me at those
moments. Little by little, my attitude shifted. The day wasn't out to get
me; I was sent into the day by a powerful God who had already
ordained my steps. Whatever happened on this day, I would overcome.
The Spirit of God is always with us and in us, but sometimes
we can sense His practical Presence only in the Word He inspired.
God is present when we read His Word and affirm its truth, when we
let the living power of the Word sink into us and shape us. It's
entirely possible to read and study the Bible without experiencing this
living power - plenty of Pharisees, philosophers, and skeptics have
done so throughout history, and so have we at times. But when the
Word lands in the fertile ground of faith in our hearts, things
change. God goes to work. He inhabits the words He has spoken, and they
take on a vitality that transforms.
If you're in need of God's Presence, you can always find it
one way or another in His revelation. Don't just read His words; let
them speak. Let them change your day - and your life.
Lord, I need to experience the living power of Your Word.
Whenever I thirst for You, lead me to the verses that reveal Your voice
for that moment. Use them to shape me from within. [The One Year
Experiencing Gods Presence Devotional by Chris Tiegreen re Heb. 4:12]
LINK FOR FURTHER STUDY ON THIS PASSAGE
If anyone has a paraphrase, commentary or testimony on this
passage of Scripture, either personal or otherwise, I would be
interested in hearing from you. Thanks in advance and let's keep uplifting
Jesus that all might be drawn to Him. Fred Gibbs
LINKS WORTH CHECKING OUT
Most Important Decision in Life:
Importance of Choice:
http://creationhealth.com/CREATION-Health/Choice [click on video]
Seeking God Made Real: http://vimeo.com/31489782
Prayer Made Real: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tc8VdMV26VE
Musical Devotional On Christian Living:
Medical Seminar on Healthful Living by David DeRose, MD, MPH:
LINKS FOR BIBLE STUDIES
Lifting Up Jesus Bible Studies: http://www.liftingupjesus.net/
Amazing Facts Bible Studies:
Discover Bible Studies: http://studies.itiswritten.com/discover/
Glow Tract Video Bible Studies: http://www.bibleresearch.info/
LINKS FOR BIBLE PROPHECY SEMINARS
The Last Day of Prophecy by Pastor Doug Batchelor:
Restoring The Power by John Bradshaw:
Prophecies Decoded by Pastor Ron Clouzet: