Saturday, June 28, 2014 4:53 AM

Doubt [Children Come Let Us Reason]

Saturday, June 28, 2014 4:53 AM
Saturday, June 28, 2014 4:53 AM

6 out of 10 Christian children abandon Church and faith by the age of 15, and the reason that was spoken most often by Church children as a reason to abandon Church and faith is that they received no answers to their doubt.

The church is unfriendly to those who doubt; young people feel they can’t ask life’s most important questions in church. (Approximately 30%) 

Let me add my witness to this statement by Christian children. In every conversation I have with people, I say “If you have any questions about your Bible or faith I will be glad to answer them”. I meet almost no one, regardless of their years as a Christian in which they do not have at least one issue of doubt that has troubled them. Where do people go to get these answers? There is a lot of information on the internet, but how do you distinguish truth?

Adults are no different than the youth, they are afraid to ask the really hard questions about doubt least they be thought of differently in their Christian circles. This issue is of epidemic proportions within all ages.

I teach a Bible study at a homeless ministry and unlike what many people might think these men know their Bible. They have had to hear a sermon for every meal they eat and from every organization they deal with. I once had a young man in his twenties ask this question in Bible study; “is it ok to approach God only because you are afraid of Hell”?

Now this is a question you would not hear someone ask in a community group or a Bible study group in Church, but it is a great question because the answer reveals many great truths. It is one of my great joys to teach these men just because of this kind of deep searching for the heart of God. These men know God’s grace and their own failings; furthermore they fully understand the gift of mercy like no other.

I told this young man that he could approach God any way possible…no one comes free of sin and doubts. He just needed to keep coming, keep studying, and keep asking questions and God would come to get him, and then he would see the love of God and have no need to fear Hell. God knows that everyone doubts, and God tells you in Isaiah to come let us reason together [with your doubt] and your sins will be as white as snow.

Is 1:18 “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.

Let me tell you a true story. I have dear friends many states away and one night the father called me and said Fred I need your help. His daughter at 16 years of age posted on her Facebook page that she was an atheist. She attended a Christian school where her mother taught. This was not a good day.

They went to her Priest and he told them that it would be okay, and that it was good that she was questioning her faith. Questions are good, but answers are better and her father knew this and called. She needed answers and could not get them for she was concerned about how her questions would be received. So she went on the internet, and the internet was waiting. Satan trains his own better than we train ours. There were all kinds of reasonable sounding apologetics for atheism and too much discord about faith.

I agreed to answer all of her questions even the hard ones and that doubt was okay with God if you are an honest seeker. This is the plan that she chose. She would submit her questions to her father and he would send them to me. I would reply promptly and she could take her time thinking through the answers in discussions with her dad. She could ask as many questions and follow-up questions as she liked. At no time would any question be treated as too silly, and she would be answered in respect.

Four months later she took down her post claiming to be an atheist. God is true and Satan is a lie and it is not hard to demonstrate this with God’s word. Thank God that her father instead of anger, worry, or shame decided to contend for the life of his daughter…going to the edge of the fire to snatch back her soul as spoken of in Jude. AMEN

Jud 17 But you must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. Jud 18 They said to you, “In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions.” Jud 19 It is these who cause divisions, worldly people, devoid of the Spirit. Jud 20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, Jud 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. Jud 22 And have mercy on those who doubt; Jud 23 save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.

Let me break these verses down and you will see how to contend for your children.

  • you must remember, beloved [ we were all called to be disciples]

  • predictions of the apostles [Do not be surprised that you must labor for your children]

  • In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions [Unbelievers]

  • these who cause divisions [The fool of this world full of anger and deceit]

  • you, beloved, building yourselves up [Study to be a workman approved and do not just leave it up to others]

  • have mercy on those who doubt [Answer questions in love, if you do not have the answer from the Bible admit it and seek the answer immediately]

  • save others by snatching them out of the fire [Do not stick your head in the sand when it gets hard…anger, worry, and shame is not a rescue plan.]

  • show mercy with fear [In humility know that Satan attacks everyone]

Is 1:18 “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.

So what is the answer for Churches? There needs to be a safe way for each person, especially children to ask questions. You may feel that your Church has a safe way, and others will think that their Church has a safe way, so how did we get the “6 out of 10”?

We must remember that questions do not always arise during a study, but many times after a study. Though you might think that the issue has been covered, each person learns differently and at different times. Children in youth groups are of different ages and maturity; therefore they have particular questions at each stage of life. Last Sunday’s lesson might have answered questions for one age group, but not the other.

There needs to be someone that can help with answers…not just any answer from the mind of man.

Job 13:12 Your maxims are proverbs of ashes; your defenses are defenses of clay…

We have the truth with many witnesses [verses], for we need to put the whole council of God before the child. We are called to equip them with the ability to defend the faith…yes apologetics…Satan is a great apologist [against faith]. Will we leave them defenseless on a spiritual battlefield?

Ps 141:8 But my eyes are toward you, O God, my Lord; in you I seek refuge; leave me not defenseless!

Is anyone crying yet?

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