February 28, 2016: Honest Doubts
John…sent them to the Lord, saying, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” (vv. 18-19)
John the Baptist earlier introduced Christ to the world as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. But in today’s Scripture, we discover that doubts have entered his mind. He sends his friends to Jesus with the question, “Are you the one who is to come; or shall we look for another?” John’s question almost disillusions us.
But notice Christ’s reaction. He does not heap judgment upon John’s head. Rather, in the presence of John’s friends, he performed many miracles and then said, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard” (v. 22). These miracles prove that he is the one who was to come.
John’s experience teaches us that there is nothing sinful about having honest doubts. John had good reason to question Jesus. He was languishing in prison and the expected revolutionary transformation had not yet taken place. John wondered whether he had been premature in his announcement of the coming of the kingdom.
In his bewilderment, he did the right thing. He went right to the source and asked Jesus, and he received the answer he was hoping for. His faith was bolstered. We need never be ashamed of the doubts and fears that creep into our hearts. If we bring them to Jesus, he will banish them with words of assurance and encouragement.
Prayer: Lord, help me to have a greater faith.
Today’s devotional was written by the late Pierce Maassen, a pastor in the RCA. It was originally published in 1967. This Lenten series comes from Words of Hope, whose mission is to build the church in the hard places through media. To learn more about the organization or subscribe to Words of Hope’s daily devotions, visit www.woh.org.