Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. "You of little faith," he said, "why did you doubt?"
Why do we doubt? I certainly can't figure out why, but we all have doubts from time to time. As Christians, doubt shouldn't even be part of our lives, but it is. The Bible says in Daniel 5:12 in the King James Version that Daniel was described as a "dissolver of doubts" by King Belshazzar's own wife. We'll do a recap of the story.
Belshazzar was the king, Nebuchadnezzar's son. This king decided to have a fancy banquet with tons of food and decorations for one thousand of his lords. The Bible says he drank wine before the thousand. Then, he commanded that the gold and silver vessels that his father had taken of out the temple in Jerusalem for the king, princes, wives, and concubines to drink from them. They drank and started worshiping false gods of gold, silver, etc. Within the hour, fingers of a man's hand wrote upon the wall of the palace, and the king saw this. The king freaked out, and the bible says in verse six that the king's knees smote one against the other. (His knees knocked.) The King offered a hefty price to the Chaldeans, soothsayers, wise men, anyone who could interpret the writing on the wall. He promised clothing of scarlet, a chain o god, and third in command of his whole kingdom. Nobody could read the writing on the wall, even those that were considered wise. Then the queen encourages her husband and says to him in verse twelve, "Forasmuch as an excellent spirit, and knowledge, and understanding, interpreting of dreams, and shewing of hard sentences, and dissolving of doubts, were found in the same Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar: now let Daniel be called, and he will shew the interpretation."
In other translations, it describes Daniel as a solver or solving of difficult problems, solves mysteries, solver of knotty problems (untying knots), explaining enigmas, answers very hard problems, untangle problems, loosing of knots, and solve hard problems. These descriptions are mostly similar. The problems were described as that, problems. Some translations said hard or difficult problems. Loosing or untying knots, knotty problems, these descriptions lead me to believe the bible is talking about loosing or untying knots of bondage, things that keep us bound. Read the Bible, you find something new every time. The next time someone has the audacity to tell me that they are bored, I'ma tell you to read your Bible! *lol*
So they called for Daniel. Daniel hadn't been invited. Isn't that how we sometimes are with God? God wasn't even invited into your day until you had a problem. You didn't seek Him until you ran into trouble. We've all been guilty of this, and that includes me. And verse 13 says that Daniel showed up. This tells me Daniel had a genuine love for people. Most of us wouldn't show up. I'm just being real. I've had friends who only used me for what they needed. If a friend threw a huge party and didn't invite me, I'd be angry, hurt, probably crying and trying to figure out what was so wrong with me that they didn't want me there. I know I'm getting too real for some of you.
Verse 13 Then was Daniel brought in before the king. And the king spake and said unto Daniel, "Art thou that Daniel, which art of the children of the captivity of Judah, whom the king my father brought out of Jewry?" Look at this. The king reminded Daniel of what his father, Nebuchadnezzar had done for him. Then the king used flattery on Daniel in verses 14, 15 and 16, and admitting his own wise men and astrologers couldn't. Then he offered Daniel the grand prize of the clothing, the jewelry, and position of third in command. Daniel declined what was behind curtains number one, two, and three, in verse 17, saying, "Let thy gifts be to thyself, and give thy rewards to another; yet I will read the writing unto the king, and make known to him the interpretation." I just want to take a moment and say that God offers so much more than what King Belshazzar offered Daniel. Promotion is of the Lord. Don't be bought by silver, gold, and position. If it sounds too good to be true, it is. Daniel was wise enough to understand this.
The writing was interpreted. You can read what it said in Daniel 5:18-31. I'm not here to focus on the interpretation. I just get so excited about studying, learning, and writing that I sometimes miss the point. So let's talk about doubt. I started with that scripture to make a point. Why did you doubt? Why do you doubt? To understand what we're up against, we need to look at doubt, analyze it, take it apart, so let's look it up in the dictionary.
Main Entry: 1doubt
Etymology: Middle English douten, from Anglo-French duter, douter, from Latin dubitare to be in doubt; akin to Latin dubius dubious
Date: 13th century
1 archaic a : fear b : suspect
2 : to be in doubt about
3 a : to lack confidence in : distrust
b : to consider unlikely
: to be uncertain
I've heard preachers say that God can deliver us from doubt and fear. Why is there an "and fear" when according to this definition, doubt and fear are essentially the same thing? You know how sad this makes me feel right now? I thought I got rid of fear from my life. I still have doubt left. I hate when this happens! Care to join me in in the "DUH" section? *lol* I didn't know my enemy. Now I do.
Those who doubt lack confidence. Now we're getting somewhere. There's a part two to this definition. Let's go there.
Main Entry: 2doubt
Date: 13th century
1 a : uncertainty of belief or opinion that often interferes with decision-making b : a deliberate suspension of judgment
2 : a state of affairs giving rise to uncertainty, hesitation, or suspense
synonyms see uncertainty
There's that lack of confidence. It even says "DISTRUST." I knew we were going somewhere. This tells me if we doubt God, ready for this...
WE DON'T TRUST HIM. Wow. That's the same thing. Look at it. Some of us need to stop right here and repent. Lord, help me to trust You more. I don't want doubt in any aspect of my life. I'm just keeping it real up in here. I'll give you a few more minutes to pray before we move on.
Let's look at the second part of the definition. I like where it says uncertainty, hesitant, and suspense. As Christians, we should look to our future with certainty because we serve a loving God. I use Jeremiah 29:11 too much, but it holds a special meaning to me. Go read Jeremiah 29:11. It says that God thinks good thoughts toward us, has a plan for us, and a future and a hope. Those of the world look at their future with uncertainty, hesitancy, and suspense. That's why tarot card readers and fortune tellers are still in business. Let me tell you something I haven't shared before. When I was in my late teens, I read tarot cards, did palm reading, and handwriting analysis. My mom's friend had all of these books about angels, palm reading, and tarot cards. She got me interested in this junk, and I did read some of these books. I began to read and study this mess, and by the time I was nineteen, I was doing this for a living. I never claimed to be "mystical" or whatever, I just told people I learned from a book, but people still took so much what the "cards" said to heart. They looked to me and my so called knowledge for their future, and I'm sure I didn't always tell them what they wanted to hear, but they believed in me. I was pulling down three hundred dollars a day because of people wanting to know what their future holds. I stopped reading cards and palms in October of 1997 before I really gave my life to the Lord for the first time in November of that same year. I threw the cards away not long after that. You know, I can't tell you what stopped me, but I know now that it was orchestrated by God. It didn't matter that I never claimed to be a psychic or a witch or mystical and magical, it was all junk that would lead me straight to Hell. All things are not for studying, all books are not for reading, all words are not for hearing. Just remember that. I'm not judging anyone, I'm just speaking the truth. I'm an ambassador for Christ, and I have the privilege of agreeing with Him and speaking what He says. I love what Pastor Chuck says, "I care more about your future than I do about my present comfort." He's right, and that's exactly why I'm writing this. I wanted to relax, I wanted to play games on the computer and watch television, lay on the couch, but I care more about your future than I do my present comfort. I've adopted that attitude. Something happened to me Sunday night that I needed. I've got to be prayed up. I can't afford not to be. You want to know your future, read Jeremiah 29:11. I don't care where you are now, you have a future and a hope if you have God.
I went somewhere. Okay, I'm back. Distrust is pretty self explanatory. Webster's Dictionary says it means a lack of trust, to have no confidence or trust in, diffidence. Let's look up Unbelief.
Main Entry: un·be·lief
Date: 12th century
: incredulity or skepticism especially in matters of religious faith
That's self explanatory, isn't it. Didn't take us anywhere really. Just a reminder. Let's look at a few more things.
Main Entry: dis·be·lief
: the act of disbelieving : mental rejection of something as untrue
Wow. See where we just went? Are you getting this? Let's look at some synonyms and see if we can make the full connection. Let's look at word synonymous with our first definition, doubt.
Entry Word: doubt
Meaning: a feeling or attitude that one does not know the truth, truthfulness, or trustworthiness of someone or something
Synonyms distrust, distrustfulness, incertitude, misgiving, mistrust, mistrustfulness, skepticism, suspicion, uncertainty
Related Words disbelief, incredulity, unbelief; anxiety, concern; compunction, qualm, scruple
Look at that. A FEELING or ATTITUDE that one DOES NOT KNOW the TRUTH. What do we know about feelings? FEELINGS ARE TEMPORARY! Attitudes are a bit different, but feelings are temporary. Why do we give in to feelings instead of holding on to the truth? Think about that.
Here's our connection. Distrust, Distrustfulness, Disbelief. What did the definiton of disbelief say? MENTAL REJECTION OF SOMETHING AS UNTRUE! I have to repeat that. DISTRUST IS THE MENTAL REJECTION OF SOMETHING AS UNTRUE. Read it again. Now read it again. Read it one more time. What do we do when we doubt God? WE MENTALLY REJECT HIS WORD AS UNTRUE! Humans are inherently doubters. We were all born in sin, we are in a world full of sin, schemes, scams, and most of us have learned that all that glitters isn't really gold. It's not as hard to tell the real from the fake sometimes, but we still doubt. There's no room for doubt in the Kingdom of God. Just looking at the definition of disbelief makes me feel horrible for all of the times I have rejected God's word as untrue. Just when I thought I knew my enemy.
I believe my point has been made. I have to give credit to Jesse Duplantis, who prompted my study, and to God, from whom all blessings flow, from whom all gifts come from, and revelation is a gift. It's your responsibility to use your newfound knowledge properly.