TODAY'S WORD FOR Thursday, October 22, 2020:
An unsettled state of opinion; indecision; a matter of uncertainty; an objection.
But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid. Lord, if it’s you, Peter replied tell me to come to you on the water. Come, He said. Then Peter got out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, Lord save me. Immediately Jesus reached out His hand and caught him. You of little faith, He said, why do you doubt?
Later Jesus appeared to the eleven as they were eating; He rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen Him after He had risen.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
We all have our times of doubt. Even the disciples had their times of doubt. We usually think of Thomas as “doubting Thomas.” Peter, we know had great faith but in Matthew 14: 27-31 (above) we find that his faith wavered and he experienced doubt. After Jesus had fed the 5000 men, plus the women and children, He told His disciples to get in the boat and go before Him to the other side of the lake, while He was sending the multitudes on their way. Jesus then wanted some solitude so He went up to the mountain to pray.
When the disciples got to the middle of the sea, the wind came up and they were being tossed around by the waves. Jesus knew they were in trouble so He began to walk toward them on the waves. The disciples saw Jesus coming and they thought it was a ghost and they cried out with fear. Jesus then spoke to them saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” But all of them doubted that it was Jesus. Peter was the first to respond by saying, “Lord if it is You: command me to come to You on the water?”
Jesus answered Peter by saying, “COME.” Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water but the storm winds were boisterous and he was afraid and cried out to the Lord to save him. Peter stepped out in faith but when he took his eyes off Jesus and focused on his circumstance, being surrounded by pounding waves, he began to sink. He realized he needed help and cried out “Lord save me.”
At once Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him and said to him, “O you of little faith, why do you doubt?” When our faith wavers because we are going through a storm in life and we are sinking in the waves, we need to take our eyes off of our circumstances and focus them on Jesus and ask for His help.
It is when our faith is weak that doubt creeps in. Satan loves to see believers doubt because it makes us more vulnerable to his temptations.
Sometimes we doubt God due to our own unfulfilled expectations. The disciples had watched Jesus die on the cross. They had seen His body placed in the tomb. Now all their hopes were dashed. They did not understand why He had to die. We read in Luke 24:21 that at least some of the disciples had hoped that Jesus was going to rescue the nation of Israel from their enemies and the oppressive rule of the Romans.
Some even thought that God would intervene and that Jesus would not really die. These followers of Jesus doubted because their expectations were not met. All eleven of the disciples had doubts that Jesus had really risen from the dead. It was only when Jesus actually appeared to them that they would truly believe. Jesus rebuked them for their lack of faith and for doubting those who told them that they had seen Jesus after He was risen.
It is not uncommon for people to pray for something and then doubt God because He did not answer their prayers to meet their expectations. Have you ever doubted the Lord? Do you have a “doubt” problem in your everyday living?
God in His perfect time will respond if we keep our faith strong and do not doubt.
Hebrews 10:23 reminds us to “hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.”
Our memory verse for today is found in James 1:5.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him.
Help me not to doubt who You are and that You are my God and my Savior. Help me not to doubt that You are with me every moment of every day. I pray that You would help me to strengthen my faith in You and let me walk close to You.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
May we encourage you to send a DONATION to help:Deliver a box of food to feed a poor family for one week in the inner cities of America --- the poorest of the poor and/or to children and their families in a third world country. (we deliver food boxes to 20 third world countries.)
SPONSOR ONE BOX FOR ONLY $7.00
CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DONATION.
(All gifts are income tax deductible)