The Effects of Doubt – Lesson 1

(Lesson 1 of 3)

Introduction:

Doubt is something that every Christian struggles with from time to time.  Teenagers often ask me a variety of questions, but they usually have a common theme… doubt.  They will ask questions like “How do I know that I am saved?” and even “How do I know that God is real?”  Most of their questions are the result of some level of doubt they have as they learn to grow and walk with God.  Although, this is often looked at as a teenager problem, the effects of doubt are also seen with adults.

We tend to think that doubt isn’t a very big deal because its something that others can’t see; therefore, it doesn’t affect anything… right?  We couldn’t be more wrong!

This will be the first lesson (3 total) on “The Effects of Doubt”

1. Doubt diminishes your personal accomplishments

Doubt is much more that something that you can keep to yourself!  Although someone else may not know the details of your doubt, the effects of your doubt are evident!

 “But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?” – Acts 5:1-3

In this story, the Bible tells us of a couple, Ananias and Sapphira, that had made a promise to God to sell their land and give the money to God’s work!  This was a fairly common practice during this time, but Ananias and Sapphira made some adjustments to their promise.  Instead of giving 100% to God like they had promised, they kept back part of the price of the land.

The Bible doesn’t say why they decided to hold back some of the money.  It could have been a variety of reasons… financial hard times came up, a large bill came in the mail, they got more for their land than they thought they would… but its easy to see that doubt played a role in their decision.  Whatever they decided to keep the money for, they figured it was better than giving it all to God!  Unfortunately, this decision ended up costing them their life!

You see?  Although we don’t know the details of their doubt, we can see the effects of the doubt in their life!

When you doubt something, you tend to hold back!  If you aren’t completely confident in an investment opportunity you will either invest a small amount or nothing at all.  The same is true in our spiritual lives!

  • When someone doubts their ability to go soul-winning, they don’t go!
  • When someone doubts their ability to follow God’s will, they stay where they are!
  • When someone doubts their ability to use their God given talents, they don’t join the choir, teach Sunday School, or answer the call to preach!

Doubt isn’t something that you can keep secret!  People may not know what you are doubting, but your doubt is holding you back from accomplishing all that God’s wants you to accomplish!  Simply put, when you doubt, you are holding back something from God!

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