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The Curse of Doubt: Abridged
Publish date: Jun 27, 2009
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Untold millions have been poisoned by the curse of doubt. The consequences are seen in both the secular and religious world, where new theories and religions continue to spring forth at an ever-increasing rate. Thus, confusion and chaos result.
Seeds of Doubt
Human doctrines and traditions have been placed above Scripture, and most Protestant churches today have become the “hold of every foul spirit.”
Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues (Revelation 18:2-4).
Babylon is called the “mother of harlots.” Her daughters are the churches that cling to her doctrines and traditions, and follow her example of sacrificing the truth and the approval of God, in order to form an unlawful alliance with the world. The message of Revelation 14, announcing the fall of Babylon, applies to religious bodies that were once pure and have become corrupt.
Since this message follows the warning of the judgment, it is given in the last days. Therefore, it cannot refer to the Roman Church alone, for that Church has been in a fallen condition for many centuries. Furthermore, in Revelation 18, the people of God are called to come out of Babylon. For God’s people to be able to come out of Babylon, they must still be in Babylon. And most of the followers of Christ are found in the churches professing the Protestant faith.
At the time of their rise, these churches took a noble stand for God and the truth, and His blessing was with them. Even the unbelieving world was constrained to acknowledge the results that followed an acceptance of the principles of the Gospel. But these churches did not continue in the truth. The prophets said this: And thy renown went forth among the heathen for thy beauty: for it was perfect through My comeliness, which I had put upon thee, saith the Lord GOD. Thou didst trust in thine own beauty, and playedst the harlot because of thy renown (Ezekiel 16:14-15).
But they fell by the same desire which was the curse and ruin of Israel—the desire of imitating the practices and courting the friendship of the ungodly (GC 382.3).
Doubt in the Mind
We have been tricked by false doctrines. Lies told about the Scriptures watered the seed of doubt until it grew into a mighty weed that encompassed the world. The damage is mostly found in education, for this is where the war rages for our minds. The battle also rages in the places where the Bible is widespread, for the Word is under attack.
Doubt turns into scoffing and scoffers tread upon the sacred ground with no regard for the fragile seedlings that spring forth:
Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water (2 Peter 3:3-5).
Thousands have gone to their ruin through the influence of skeptics and philosophers who taint people’s hearts and minds with the poison of doubt. Satan works through such means to carry out his purposes of ruining souls.
But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea (Matthew 18:6).
An example of such erroneous teachings is found in the book Die Belofte van Sy Wederkoms by Theology Professor Dr. Lemmer:
The Old Covenant was annulled with the betrayal of Judas…Those who still try to keep the law are not spiritually of age and have not yet received the Holy Spirit. If the law is still read these days, it must be for people that are not of age, that is for unbelievers. This is the only sense in which the law is still applicable today. Believers live through the Spirit and are not under the law…Christians who today try to keep the ten commandments hinder the work of the Holy Spirit and undermine the pure essence of the New Covenant.i
Those who truly search the Scriptures and understand God’s Word will not be led astray by such blatant falsehood, for the Bible is the only rule of faith. Unfortunately, most people today look to the physical realm for their belief system.
We know that in His Word, God has clearly outlined His law, and that law will judge us. There is not an ounce of Biblical support to condone the law being done away with. This is yet another toxic poison emanating from Satan, the father of lies.
In a world where truth is being attacked and undermined on every side, let us remain firmly rooted and grounded on Bible truth.
Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus (Revelation 14:12).
Faith: Doubt’s Antidote
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that waverth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord (James 1:5-7).
Faith in Knowledge
We need faith in God and in His Word. In a world of skepticism and uncertainty, we need to show what it means to have a living and intelligent faith.
This faith is developed through careful study of God’s Word, which gives us the knowledge to understand His promises, and the conditions upon which these promises are fulfilled. When we understand the true will of God, and fulfill the conditions of His promises, we will have the confidence to come before His throne with an unwavering faith, doubting nothing.
E. G. White writes this:
God is behind every promise, and we cannot dishonor Him more than by questioning and hesitating, by asking and not believing, and then by talking doubt. If you do not immediately receive what you have asked for, will you go on in sullenness and unbelief? Believe; believe that God will do just what He has promised. Keep your prayers ascending, and watch, work and wait. Fight the good fight of faith. Say to your heart, “God has invited me to come. He has heard my prayer. He has pledged His word that He will receive me, and He will fulfill His promise. I can trust God; for He so loved me that He gave His only-begotten Son to die for me. The Son of God is my Redeemer” (FE 299.2).
We are told in Hebrews 11:6, “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” Without first obtaining the faith of the Gospel, we cannot come to a knowledge of God and His Word. Without the knowledge of God, we cannot fully comprehend His will, thus we will not live according to His precepts and our faith is powerless.
We cannot serve God without an unwavering belief in every word that comes from His mouth. Knowledge of truth will expel all doubt in our souls, producing living and intelligent faith.
From God, the fountain of wisdom, proceeds all the knowledge that is of value to man, all that the intellect can grasp or retain. The fruit of the tree representing good and evil is not to be eagerly plucked, because it is recommended by one who was once a bright angel in glory. He has said that if men eat thereof, they shall kwon good and evil. But let it alone. The true light shines from Jesus Christ, who “lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” From the Holy Spirit proceeds divine knowledge. He knows what humanity needs to promote peace, happiness, and restfulness here in this world, and secure eternal rest in the Kingdom of God (FE 437.1).
This is the knowledge and wisdom to seek after, for it leads to light and life eternal. When Christ came to Earth, only those who sincerely desired truth and light from heaven received Him with gladness.
Faith in Sanctification
In the second letter by Peter to those who had obtained “like precious faith” with himself, the apostle sets forth the divine plan for the development of Christian character. He writes this:
Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (2 Peter 1:2-7).
Speaking about this passage, E. G White writes this:
These words are full of instruction, and strike the keynote of victory. The apostle presents before the believers the ladder of Christian progress, every step of which represents advancement in the knowledge of God, and in the climbing of which there is to be no standstill. Faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and charity are the rounds of the ladder. We are saved by climbing round after round, mounting step after step, to the height of Christ’s ideal for us (AA 530.1).
If we truly wish to obtain victory over sin, we must stop doubting what God can do for us. Lack of faith is what causes weakness in Christianity, and failure to live victoriously for Christ. He sets the standard. It is only by our lack of faith that we fail to reach that standard.
God expects us to build characters in accordance with the pattern set before us. We are to lay brick by brick, adding grace to grace, finding our weak points and correcting them in accordance with the directions given. When a crack is seen in the walls of a mansion, we know that something about the building is wrong. In our character building, cracks are often seen. Unless these defects are remedied, the house will fall when the tempest of trial beats upon it. God gives us strength, reasoning power, time, in order that we may build characters on which He can place His stamp of approval. He desires each child of His to build a noble character, by the doing of pure, noble deeds, that in the end he may present a symmetrical structure, a fair temple, honored by man and God. In our character building we must build on Christ. He is the sure foundation–a foundation which can never be moved. The tempest of temptation and trail cannot move the building which is riveted to the Eternal Rock (CG 165-166).
Preparing for War…with Faith
How are soldiers prepared for war? They must endure difficult training and face all challenges head-on, so they may have a chance in a day of strife. Likewise, we are entering into the final stage of the battle between good and evil, and we are called upon to put on the whole armor of God. This is what enables us to fight valiantly for our High Commander, Jesus.
Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand (Ephesians 6:11-13).
When the servants of Christ take the shield of faith for their defense, and the sword of the Spirit for war, there is danger in the enemy’s camp…The work of conquering evil is to be done through faith. Those who go into the battlefield will find that they must put on the whole armor of God. The shield of faith will be their defense and will enable them to be more than conquerors. Nothing else will avail but this—faith in the Lord of hosts, and obedience to His orders. Vast armies furnished with every other facility will avail nothing in the last great conflict. Without faith, an angel host could not help. Living faith alone will make them invincible and enable them to stand in the evil day, steadfast, unmovable, holding the beginning of their confidence firm unto the end (God’s Amazing Grace, 25-26).
Oh, that we could understand that God has not changed. We are the ones who have changed. He is still our High Priest, but we forgotten how to approach Him. We have forgotten how to pray the prayer of faith, because the world is choked with the brambles of doubt and worry.
No wonder the Lord has to permit trial and affliction, so that our need will expel our doubt. Then we may put forth fervent and effective prayers to God, and take hold of His divine power, that we may be ready to stand in the last great conflict. The curse of doubt must be transformed into a living faith, for without faith it is impossible to please Him.
The signs of the end are fast fulfilling. The time of trouble is very near us now. We are to be brought into strait places in a way in which we have not been brought heretofore. The time of trouble is near, and we are to awake to a realization of this. We are to be sure that our feet are in the narrow path. We need an experience that we have not yet had, that we may have the assurance that the God of all grace is a very present help in time of need (Letter 54, 1906, E. White).
We have forgotten how to pray the prayer of faith. May we obtain a living and unshakable faith, that we may experience the wondrous things God has in store for us!
i Dr. Lemmer, Die Belofte van Sy Wederkoms (2003): 158, 162.