“I wanted to draw attention that, we are reading the Bible when we read Psalm 73. Somehow, people’s words doubting God, have become God’s words to doubting people.”

Doubt comes from life experiences that cause your heart to question the realities that your mind believes are true.

You’re asking questions. Truthfulness of the Bible? Character of God? The historicity of the Bible?

“Dude chill out, just believe.”

This is total hogwash.

Faith doesn’t come at the expense of reason. Our Christian faith is based on our belief of eyewitness accounts of seeing the risen Jesus.

It is actually unpleasant to grow. It could be that you’re at a point in your journey following Jesus where, well, the explanations and the way you’re reading the Bible that made sense to you 3 years ago, they’re not going to work for you anymore.

And that’s not a sign of you losing faith. It’s not a sign of sub-spirituality.

It’s a sign of you growing. And actually it means your faith needs to catch up with your growth as a human being.

If faith means anything, it’s faith in changing.

Responses to doubt in Psalm 73:

  1. Verse 3. Deconstruct your own doubt. Really probe honestly your motives for your doubt. Is it really the core of the issue, or are you lying to yourself, putting up smoke screens.
  2. Verse 17. Immerse yourself into a community of faith experience. Doubts aren’t just ideas, they come from a life experience. So to address a real doubt in your life, you aren’t going to think your way out of it. You didn’t get into it just by thinking, so you’re not going to get out of it just by thinking. Immerse yourself with a community of worship, prayer, reading, fellowship.
  3. Verse 18. Compare worldviews. Our culture wants to press that the opposite of faith is reason. That there is some neutral territory of “always true” against which there is another worldview that is “uncertain”. There is substantially just as much “faith” put into other worldviews, such as atheism, if not more. To say that belief in Christianity is throwing reason to the wind is in itself unreasonable.
  4. Verse 21-28. “But for me it is good to be near God” All of a sudden his doubt has stripped away all of his assumptions, stripped away all his envy and his jealousy. Right where he feels so alone, and brutish, and where he feels viscerally God’s absence… what does he find there? Yet right there in that place, he comes to the realization: “I am always with you, you have always been holding me by your right hand. You guide me with counsel. And afterward You will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? Here on earth, there is nothing I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart may fail, but You are the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”

Precisely when he thought God was absent, he realizes that was the form of God’s presence in his life, to bring him to this place of dependence and relationship. All of a sudden, he’s overwhelmed with this intimate, relational language. It’s as if this experience of doubt was the best thing that could have happened to him.

These are my personal notes from this truly life-giving sermon [52:04 mins]. Most, if not all, of the content here is directly taken from the sermon.

Praying Through Doubt - PSALMS: The Language of Prayer - Tim Mackie