A couple months ago I had a post with some random quotes on faith and doubt. Here are a few more quotes/thoughts to share again. As a matter of interest, the top google searches bringing people to my blog are various wordings of those looking for info on the relationship between faith and doubt. If that is you, here is one of my first posts where I share my personal journey and thoughts on “Faith and Doubt.”
On with the quotes:
When Philip Yancey turned 50, he wrote an article for his Christianity Today column called “My to-be list. What I learned from a 50 year spiritual checkup.” In it he shared some things he wanted to work on in his next 5o years! One was this:
Question your doubts as much as your faith. By personality or perhaps as reaction to a fundamentalist past, I brood on doubts and experience faith in occasional flashes. Isn’t it about time for me to reverse the pattern?
This reminded me of a t-shirt I once saw that said, “I have doubts about disbelief.”
“Whether your faith is that there is a God or that there is not a God, if you don’t have any doubts, you are either kidding yourself or are asleep.” Frederick Buechner
Soren Kierkegaard said that to have faith, we must “venture a decisive act. The proof does not precede but follows; it exists in and with the life that follows Christ.”
Pascal’s Wager: Pascal begins with the premise that the existence or non-existence of God is not provable by human reason, since the essence of God is “infinitely incomprehensible.” Since reason cannot decide the question, one must “wager”:
Belief is a wise wager. Granted that faith cannot be proved, what harm will come to you if you gamble on its truth and it proves false? If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing. Wager , then, without hesitation, that God exists. Pascal
“You can only apprehend the Infinite by a faculty that is superior to reason.” Plotinus
“Faith is the master, and reason the maid-servant.” Martin Luther
From “The Root of the Righteous” by AW Tozer:
“In our constant struggle to believe we are likely to overlook the simple fact that a bit of healthy disbelief is sometimes as needful as faith to the welfare of our souls. I would go further and say that we would do well to cultivate a reverent skepticism. It will keep us out of a thousand bogs and quagmires where others who lack it sometimes find themselves. It is no sin to doubt some things, but it may be fatal to believe everything.
Faith is at the root of all true worship, and without faith it is impossible to please God. Through unbelief Israel failed to inherit the promises. “By grace are ye saved through faith” … “The just shall live by faith.” Such verses as these come trooping to our memories, and we wince just a little at the suggestion that unbelief may also be a good and useful thing. It sounds like a bold cancellation of the doctrine of faith as taught in the Scriptures and disposes us to write off the brazen advocate of disbelief as a Modernist.
Let’s look at the matter a bit more closely. Faith never means gullibility. The man who believes everything is as far from God as the man who refuses to believe anything. Faith engages the Person and promises of God and rests upon them with perfect assurance. Whatever has behind it the character and word of the living God is accepted by faith as the last and final truth from which there must never be any appeal. Faith never asks questions when it has been established that God has spoken. “Yea, let God he true, but every man a liar” (Rom. 3:4). Thus faith honors God by counting Him righteous and accepts His testimony against the very evidence of its own senses. That is faith, and of such we can never have too much.”