It is 2:45 in the morning, and I can't sleep. We all have restless nights from time to time. Mine is because of the recent tragedy of Samson and Geneva, and of some other sad, personal situations that have transpired in the past 24 hours. What is bothering me tonight may have also bothered you in the past. I am bothered by my unbelief in God. I don't mean I don't believe in Him, I mean I have occasional unbelief in how He can allow certain things to happen. If God wants the best for us, and if the Bible says He protects us, then why do bad things happen to good people? I know He gives man free will, and I know we live in a sinful, fallen world. I also know He could stop such tragedies like the ones that have happened this week. I'm pretty sure He stops some things from happening that we are not even aware of. But why does He allow such horrible things to happen such as a toddler being shot point-blank by a mad man?
Maybe you are struggling with this same issue as I am. Maybe you find yourself questioning if He is even real. I have searched the Scriptures since around 11 o clock tonight and have found comfort in a few things that I want to share. First of all, every single one of us sins. From Genesis to Revelation, the Bible is full of Scriptures that remind of us that we are sinful. But the Bible also comforts us in the fact that there is no sin too great for God to forgive. In fact, if you have trusted Jesus as your personal savior, then all your sins are washed away, past, present, and future! The only unforgivable sin is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. But that does not mean an occasional unbelief in Him or in the Bible. The only unforgivable sin is the sin of never believing in Jesus all the way until death. If you have already accepted Christ, then you can not commit the unforgivable sin. Haven't you ever questioned if God exists sometimes, especially in the face of horrific tragedies? If we are honest with ourselves, perhaps we all have had the occasional unbelief. I think God chose Thomas as one of His disciples for this very reason. Known as "doubting Thomas", he was constantly in a state of unbelief. But the Bible is so clear that Jesus forgave him every time. And what about Peter? If some of His disciples can doubt Jesus, then obviously God expects we will occasionally doubt Him too. But don't let that worry you that you have lost your salvation. No matter what sin we commit, once we are saved by the blood of Jesus, we will always be saved. The key is to not beat ourselves up. Instead, we should ask Him to forgive us and ask Him to help us repent and mature spiritually from the experience. Maybe "unbelief" is too strong of a word. Perhaps "questioning" about what has happened is a better one. So please, if your heart is heavy with unbelief or questioning tonight like mine due to personal tragedies, remember that God will see us through it! Don't ever give up on Him! Hope is an amazing thing. But His assurance is even more amazing!
Romans 8: 1-2 says, "There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the Law of the spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death." (emphasis added)
Father, forgive us for our unbelieving or questioning moments. Please restore our faith and give us peace when we fail You. In Jesus name, Amen.