This is an attitude of doubting the truth, questioning the reliability of any statement before either accepting or rejecting it. The disciples were sceptical of Jesus words to feed the multitudes.  He responded to their ‘it can’t be done’ insinuation with a question, “How much do you already have?”, then showed in a creative positive manner it was possible with the little available to provide adequately for the needs as He tapped into the power of God (Mk 6:36-44).

Thomas wanted real proof and not just hearsay, “Unless I see the nail marks I will not believe”. Jesus granted him the opportunity and he believed, but Jesus also said, “Blessed are those who haven’t seen but yet believe” (Jn 20:25-29).

The first report from the women who had been to the tomb – that Jesus had risen – was not taken seriously, nor was Peter’s freedom from prison (Lk 24:11; Act 12:14-16). We should not gullibly accept all we are told, nor reject what seems incredible but instead look at situations in faith rather than with human reasoning. Abraham laughed at the idea that Sarah his wife would have a child in her old age

Cautiously give people the              benefit of the doubt

yet God brought it to pass, as promised (Gen 17:17). Do I need to repent of inwardly laughing in disbelief at the seeming impossibilities and instead ask the Lord to increase my faith in His ability “to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine” (Lk 17:5; Eph 3:20). Doubt and faith are interlinked; doubt recognises ‘I can’t’ yet faith believes ‘He can’. Do not dismiss or be sceptical of any genuine word of the Lord, however unlikely it may seem to your senses (2 Kgs 7:1-20). If God is in something He can do what is impossible, so in faith work with Him rather than excluding yourself from the privilege by a negative approach (Mt 19:26). Judge any word ‘given in the Lord’s name’ as to how it lines up with the principles of Scripture and nature of God (Act 17:11; 1 Thes 5:20,21). 

See also: agnostic, atheist, belief/believe, critical thinking, doubt, faith, positive mental attitude, unbelief.

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