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jesus the radical pastor | exploring the life and mission of the 1st century Jesus for our 21st century » Blog Archive » Doubters, arise!

Over at Jesus Creed, Scot McKnight posted a young doubter’s struggles. Scot invited Jesus Creeders to offer sensitive counsel and Scot, then, posted his own response to the young leader. In light of this, note the “Great Commission” text below:

16Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Some disciples worshipped. Some doubted. All were commissioned to make disciples.

Doubters have their place in announcing and practicing the unexpectedly loving reign of God. Old, stale thinking pitted doubt against faith (as Scot McKnight points out). More discerning thinking sees doubt as an ally to faith.

A skewed triumphalist Christianity erased doubt as a legitimate aspect of the Christian journey. In its heated sense of victory, it boiled doubt away as some sort of sin. As a matter of fact, a serious sin: unbelief. This only caused doubters to go underground and live with the agony in their souls. Who wants to be branded a pagan unbeliever in the tight-assed evangelical community? Those who live constipated Christian lives don’t want any uncertainty to be voiced at all…ever.  They don’t really trust in the Christ of the cross and resurrection; they trust a system of belief that keeps their tidy little self-centered worlds together.

This is the time for doubters to arise. Take your place in the Great Commission task of the church. Voice your doubts. Ask your questions. Carry your honest inquiries into the communities where you live.

For God’s sake, doubters, upset the apple cart!

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