I deal as you know in the area of Christian apologetics. Our goal in Christian apologetics is to show the world that the message of Christ is true. I have many reasons why I believe it is and I believe I can refute those who contradict as Paul tells us to do in Titus. However, there is a concern among Christians and I know it because I’ve shared it myself. Christianity is true, but what if I am not?
This hits hard in our emotional culture. We live in a society where we say “Well, I prayed that pray, but I’m really not sure,” or “I don’t really live the kind of life that I ought to live.” I doubt there are few of us who have never asked these kinds of questions. Gary Habermas spoke on this at an apologetics conference I was at last year and when he asked how many people have doubted their salvation, several hands went up, and that includes mine.
We live in a world where our feelings dictate us more than they should. A personal doubt can be a gnawing cancer that eats away at us. For many of us, we can’t just say “Ah, that’s nonsense” and get rid of it. Instead, we have to analyze it and see if it could be true. Odd that we never learn. That analysis never does any good.
Instead, we often make ourselves feel worse. We get into the case of the tail wagging the dog where we have a belief and it’s not based on evidence but instead, the belief produces evidence that is not true but due to our emotional turmoil at the time, we take it as if it is the truth.
Of course, we don’t just stop there. Once we accept one false belief as a fact, we are ready to deduce other “truths” from this one “truth.” The whole belief is flimsy and people looking outside can usually tell us that it is, but we tend to not share that with them. After all, in the church, that goes against the good church image.
My solution to this? We need to learn to realize that what we are going through is common and I would encourage the church to be a place for doubters. Too often, we fear in the church that we can’t confess our sins and questions. If we can’t do such, why should we expect the world to?
Also, we need to learn to ignore our feelings at times, especially if we’re melancholy individuals like myself who are analytical to the core and quite obsessive. Our friends can often give us good feedback. It might be painful, but they always have our best interests at heart.
Lastly, we need to learn truth, and this is the truth about the gospel as well as the truth about health and psychology and other fields related to this. The best way to counter an error is with the truth. It works with apologetics and it works with our own personal lives.
Dear friend, if you are doubting, it is more likely a sign that you are true. After all, we only doubt what matters to us. Rest assured. You are in the truth and that truth will set you free.