It’s no surprise that many of today’s Christians struggle with doubts about whether Christianity is worthy of belief. We live in a culture that offers a diverse and constant stream of objections to Christianity. Whether on TV, online, through social media, at work, at universities, there is no shortage of material that is seemingly bent toward challenging the core beliefs of Christianity. It is no wonder that so many Christians struggle with doubt.
Doubt can stunt our spiritual growth, and suppress our motivation for standing up for Christ in front of our peers. If we are not confident that what we claim to believe is true (or, at least, that our beliefs are reasonable) why would we share them with someone else?I speak from experience. I have struggled with doubts at varying points in my early Christian life. But since I believed Christianity was important enough to tell others about it, I regularly shared Christ with others. In some cases people made professions of faith. In other cases, the conversations did not always go as well as planned. An embarrassing admission, I sometimes looked for escape hatches when people asked questions that I was unable to answer. Little did I know that my greatest intellectual obstacles to faith lie ahead.
It was during the freshman semester of Junior College, as an Engineering student in sunny California, when I met English Prof. “Dr. D.” Why did I have to take his class? He was an imposing man, with a thick mustache, large bi-focals and tight pants that reminded me of someone from back in the marijuana-smoking 60’s, Woodstock era. (I know…I’ve just lost most of you).
Anyway, you’ve probably heard of those “God’s Not Dead” movies, the first one featured a professor who dared his students to prove God’s existence. Well, this was my God’s Not Dead experience and it did not turn out well.
This may as well have been a Religious Studies course because instead of teaching us English grammar, this instructor (claiming to be “agnostic” on the question of God’s existence) took every occasion to cast aspersions upon anyone foolish enough to entertain belief in God! In an English class?! Equally surprising, this happened in the early 90’s…a time in which, as far as I knew, this exercise was uncommon.
Needless to say, it was then that I grew secretly fearful that my Christian beliefs would not hold up to scrutiny. Unlike the student in the movie, I wasn’t foolish enough to give any indication, either to Dr. D. or the class, that I was a Christian. I knew precious little about The Faith, and I simply was not about to make a fool of myself in front of the class. That was the bad news.
The good news is, in the midst of unanswered questions and growing doubts about my faith, I became unsatisfied with my limited perspective on Christianity and I became more concerned with finding answers to some of my questions and doubts. At the time I couldn’t find any answers but something told me that there were answers out there… somewhere.
Some years later, I discovered Christian radio. And each day I ate, slept, and drank, Bible programs that aired. John MacArthur, J. Vernon McGee, Adrian Rogers, Charles Stanley, Chuck Swindoll, Chuck Smith, Greg Laurie, David Jeremiah, and R. C. Sproul, we’re just some of the speakers that I listened to.
I also stumbled upon the “Bible Answer Man” broadcast. Periodically a guest named Norman L. Geisler co-hosted the show. He was very adept at answering questions that Christians had. He was able to deal with objections that skeptics offered. And he was able to rattle off Scriptures like you would not believe! I was so impressed! I thought, “Who is this guy?!
This opened me up to a whole new world of resources that I never dreamed existed. I begin learning answers to my questions and found responsible ways of addressing doubts. Incidentally, that also became the basis for my future interest in the ministry of offering reasons for faith [cf.1 Pet. 3:15; Jude 3]).
My first recommendation for dealing with doubts is to ask God for wisdom as we seek to find answers. God characteristically directs us to mentors and other resources that can help us to navigate through difficult periods of doubt. To be sure, not all doubts are of the same kind. The nature of some doubts is chiefly emotional while others are mostly intellectual. Both of which can have a powerful impact upon our confidence in Christ and our convictions about Christian truth-claims.
“My commitment toward informing, equipping, and encouraging believers to become fully engaged followers of Christ stems from a passion for fulfilling Jesus’ ‘Great Commission'”
The stream of questions about Christian beliefs, and objections to Christian truth-claims is constant in our culture. Doubt is the natural result of many such questions and objections. Solid Rock Reasons, and other like-minded ministries, are here to serve as a resource to the body of Christ in an area that is too often overlooked.
My commitment toward informing, equipping, and encouraging believers to become fully engaged followers of Christ stems from a passion for fulfilling Jesus’ “Great Commission,” i.e., being witnesses to the truths that he taught (Matt. 28:19-20). Given that the Christian witness takes place in the public arena, we must fortify Christian truth-claims; in the minds of believers, so that we may confidently engage in the marketplace of ideas.
Many of today’s believers want to make an impact in their spheres of influence. Unfortunately, doubts have derailed their efforts at doing so. Solid Rock Reasons seeks to be a source of encouragement because no one should face doubts alone. I am convinced that as we invest time in overcoming our intellectual barriers, we will more likely engage in reaching the world for Christ. The corresponding benefit is that doing so may help us to work through any lingering doubts that we may have about the faith.
So, take time to invest in your spiritual growth, and take care to remain proactive at dealing with intellectual doubts. Do all that you can to gain confidence in Christ, by asking the Lord to help you overcome doubts and to gain courage to follow Him.
Thank you for praying both for us and for those to whom we minister.
Yours, In Christ
Ibrahim Inuwa, Founder of Solid Rock Reasons