If there really is a good God, why do bad things happen? If God is all-powerful, why can’t he just defeat Satan already and rid the world of sin? If Jesus forgave the sins of the world, why am I still expected to behave in a God-pleasing manner? Why does scientific evidence seem to point to there not being a God?
Believe it or not, every Christian has had doubts about God, even professional church workers. Your parents have had doubts, your grandparents, everyone! It is part of our sinful nature to doubt God. No matter how hard you may try to believe perfectly, your efforts will be in vain. It is also important to acknowledge that we cannot ever understand God. The apostle Paul tells it like this:
Read Romans 7:15-20.
Paul acknowledged the fight between his will and his sinful nature, a battle which all people fight daily. Even most of those who do not believe in God have a conscience and do their best to uphold our earthly laws. What they do not yet know is that this is God’s Law written on their hearts.
Now that we know that doubt is unavoidable, what can we do? On our own, we cannot really do anything. However, God can. God gives us the gift of faith. God gives us His Word and Sacrament to offer forgiveness and remind us of God’s good promises to us. We can pray for God’s help to overcome your doubt and live empowered by the Holy Spirit in accordance with His Will. King David, after sinning, asked God this:
Read Psalm 51:1, 10-12.
After asking God to forgive his sins, David also asks for the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit has the power to sanctify us, to help us live a life that goes along with God’s Will. You can pray Psalm 51:10-12 as well. Ask God for the power to believe in Him, and to live a life that is God-pleasing. Remember that even the “Strongest” Christians have doubts about God and His power and willingness to help them. We can go to God confident that He loves you and is there for you, and He has promised his Spirit to help you.
Heavenly Father, thank you for another day in Your creation. Please send your Spirit to sanctify my thoughts and actions, that I might live in accordance with Your Will. Help me to do better, so that I may lead others, by example, toward Your light. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
- What are some specific doubts that you have had about God?
- What are some common arguments made against the existence of God by atheists?