Doubt or Unbelief
Concerning God's Word
“For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be removed, and be cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he says shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he says.” –Mark 11:23
“And he did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.” –Matthew 13:58
“So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.” –Hebrews 3:19; 4:6
“Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.” –Hebrews 4:11
If we want healing, health, success, happiness, and prosperity from God and through the gospel, we must first of all learn the lesson, and learn it well that we must stop doubting the Word of God on anything that it says. If man had never permitted himself to doubt in the first place, if he had warded off all suggestions of Satan to doubt God, and if he had got immediate and full victory over all doubt to begin with, there would not have been the struggle that there is today to believe God without a doubt. The first and last lesson we must learn is to doubt not, if we want anything from God. It is reported that Franklin D. Roosevelt said, "It never occurs to me to doubt God." We all should maintain this attitude toward God at all times.
God has made it very plain that the absolute condition of answered prayer is "Let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not [without rebuke]: and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord. A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways" (James 1:5-8).
The Moffat translation reads, "Let him ask God who gives to all men without question or reproach, and the gift will be his. Only, let him ask in faith, with never a doubt; for the doubtful man is like the surge of the sea whirled and swayed by the wind; that man need not imagine he will get anything from God, double-minded creature that he is, wavering at every turn."
The Weymouth translation reads, "Let him ask God for it, who gives with open hand to all men, and without upbraiding; and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith and have no doubts; for he who has doubts is like the surge of the sea, driven by the wind and tossed into spray. A person of that sort must not expect to receive anything from the Lord- such a one is a man of two minds, undecided in every step he takes."
The secret of answered prayer is very clear in Scripture. Note how simple the Bible is on this point: "As thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee" (Matt.8:13), "According to your faith be it unto you" (Matt. 9:27-29), "O Woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt" (Matt. 15:21-28), "And ALL THINGS, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, BELIEVING, ye shall receive" (Matt. 21:21-22), "If thou canst believe, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE TO HIM THAT BELIEVETH" (Mark 9:23), "Have faith in God For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and cast into the sea; and SHALL NOT DOUBT IN HIS HEART, BUT SHALL BELIEVE THAT THOSE THINGS WHICH HE SAITH SHALL COME TO PASS, HE SHALL HAVE WHATSOEVER HE SAITH. Therefore I say unto you, WHAT THINGS SOEVER YE DESIRE, WHEN YE PRAY, BELIEVE THAT YE RECEIVE THEM [Believe that you have got them], AND YE SHALL HAVE THEM" (Mark 11:22-24); "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" (Heb. 11:6).
If faith is God's condition of answered prayer, it will pay each of us to make up our minds before we pray that we are going to cleave to what we decide to ask of God and fight it through until we get an answer. If we children of God could learn this one secret, we would stop asking God for blessings until we thoroughly made up our minds that we want them badly enough to see our desires through to a complete answer. Then, following this procedure, our prayers will be answered. But many times we change our minds when the answer does not come all at once. We decide that it is not the will of God, or that it would not have been best for us to have received an answer. These things should always be settled before a prayer is made for something. The fact that an answer is not forthcoming the same moment we ask is no proof that it is not the will of God or that it might not have been best for us.
This is the most harmful procedure for a child of God to follow, but, sad to say, it is one of the most common procedures followed by multitudes. A few failures like this will soon make us form a habit that causes failure in almost every prayer that is prayed. Failures are so common in the lives of people concerning answered prayer that it is safe to say that not one percent of all prayers are answered. But under the circumstances even this is a high percentage. Definite requests are made by the hundreds but few are the answers. This condition seems never to bother the average praying person, who seems to take it as part of the prayer life not to get an answer, except occasionally.
We can wake up to realize that if we can get an answer once in a while, we can get an answer every time we pray; that if desperation and absolute necessity can force us to have faith enough for God to answer one time, we can force ourselves to become earnest and have faith enough for all things that we pray for at all times. Why should there ever be a doubt in any of our minds, if the simple definite promises of God are found to cover the need, and if we who are praying can find firm assurance in the Word of God that He has promised that particular thing? If God's Word does not promise what is asked, it is not necessary to have it; for Peter said, "According as his divine power hath given us ALL THINGS that pertain to life and godliness.... 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" (2 Pet. 1:3-4).
If absolute, unwavering faith is what God demands before He obligates Himself to answer, let each of us who asks see to it that we ask in faith, nothing wavering, and since we have the definite Word of God promising us what we ask, we then will receive. Since it was Satan through the serpent that raised the first doubt in man and made it second nature to doubt God, let everyone recognize that all doubts are of the devil and are contrary to the Word of God. Let us put a stop to all doubting by definitely and wholeheartedly resisting the devil, and the devil will flee from us (James 4:7). All doubting is definite opposition to God and His Word, and when we are in such opposition to the One we expect an answer from, we cannot hope to receive it.
In order not to doubt God's Word, we must know it beyond question; this is the key of knowing the truth, and it will make us free, as promised by Jesus (John 8:31-32). The way to know the Word of God is to take it for what it says and reject the interpretations of demons and people who try to change even one jot or tittle of it. All such changes are satanic in origin and propagation, and must be rejected before doubt can be finally and completely dispelled. All doubts must be rooted out of the life before prayer can be answered. Prayer must be answered before the benefits of the promises can be fully realized. The way to answered prayer then becomes clear, and it is the duty of each individual to see to it that we master all doubt and demons and cooperates with God's Word with all his heart. See “What to do to Stop All Doubt” below.
MEN FAIL TO GET ALL THE BENEFITS PROVIDED IN GOD'S PLAN BECAUSE OF UNBELIEF AND BECAUSE OF THE MANY CONDITIONS THEY MANUFACTURE AND WHICH THEY THINK THEY MUST MEET BEFORE GOD WILL ANSWER PRAYER. Many students who were training to be ministers, missionaries, and Christian workers, once were asked in a classroom to state the conditions they believed one would have to meet in order to get God to answer every prayer. It was surprising to hear the scores of conditions that they thought must be met before God would answer prayer. The whole classroom seemed to be filled with nothing but conditions. When they all got through, they learned, "It is no wonder that we have so few prayers answered. The great wonder is how anyone could ever get one prayer answered if he had to meet all those conditions."
Then they were given the all-inclusive condition of answered prayer: "If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you" (John 15:7). This is really all one has to do to get answers to all his prayers. This implies that one believes from the heart all the promises of God, that in Christ one is living a life of righteousness and true holiness, and that one expects God to answer prayer when he does pray. Any one person who will do this without wavering in his faith is just as sure to receive that for which he has asked as he is sure he is alive. One must "ask in faith, nothing wavering.... and it shall be given him" (Jas. 1:5-8). One "must believe that he [God] is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him" (Heb. 11:6).
Is this too much to ask of us? Is this too much for us to do in order to get what we want in life? This is asking very little on the part of God. Why should He not be firm in His demand for unwavering faith? Why should He freely and abundantly give to us in answer to our prayers if we do not believe that He is true to His Word? Should we expect God to answer us upon any other grounds? God has not once in the history of the human race failed one person of all that He has promised. We have no reasonable excuse for unbelief. We freely choose the way of unbelief if we do not choose the way of faith. We cannot be neutral. We easily believe Satan when it comes to doubting God's faithfulness to meet His obligation to answer prayer and fulfill His word to believers. We can, if we will believe God instead of Satan. God can and does expect this belief from us before He will give what He has promised. See “Rationale of Unbelief Answered With Scripture.”
What to do to Stop All Doubt
The first thing for us to do is to study the Bible and become settled as to what God promises for all people today. If He has made promises that cover every human need and if He has made some that cover any particular need, then it can be relied upon without further questioning that it is the will of God to give to each person that which He has promised. We should get the particular promises that plainly state the will of God in granting what is desired and then we should refuse to tolerate any wavering concerning the question. We should not listen to, or entertain for a moment, or argue the case with people or devils. It should be settled once and forever that it is God's will to grant what He has promised. It should also be settled that any time one truly has faith in prayer that the answer will be granted. This kind of attitude naturally implies that we believe that God has made such provision or He would not have made such promises. Just as it is impossible to get by faith some blessing that one is not sure that God has promised, it is impossible for us to fail to receive what we claim by faith if we do not waver. God is true, the Word of God is yes and amen to them that believe, and no person can fail to get what we have asked for in faith when we refuse to waver and question the will of God as revealed in His promises.
The Big Picture
The plan of God is to end evil and suffering forever (Exodus 34:6-7; Matthew 13:37-43; I Corinthians 15:24-28; 1 Timothy 1:5; Revelation 21-22). The ultimate purpose of God in all His present dealings with man is to bring him back to the place where he was before the fall (beloved fellowship) and purge him of all possibility of failing in the future. “The object and purpose of our instruction and charge is that all believers would be filled with charity (love) that comes from a pure heart, and a clear conscience, and genuine trust faith.” —1 Timothy 1:5
There are 750 promises of God (benefits) in the New Testament alone
See the reality of evil, Satan, or the devil
“Beloved, I wish above all things that you may prosper and be in health, even as your soul prospers.” – 3 John 1: 2
Thank you Finis Jennings Dake and Dake Publishing!
Thank you Derek Prince and his book Blessing or Curse...!