What are some of the things that cause people to doubt
By: The John Ankerberg Show
| The media player is loading…
|Saved for Sure, Overcoming Doubt: How do you overcome those doubts, to be brought to the point where you say, “Yes, I know it’s okay. I’m going to Heaven.” For Doubters Only: There are still some people who have a tough time in having confidence in their salvation. What do those folks need to do? Dr. Erwin Lutzer’s personal testimony.
Copyright: 2003, Number of Programs: 4, Cat. No. YBS2
Keywords: Doubts, Faith vs. feelings, Exodus 12:1-51
- Ankerberg: Erwin, a lot of Christians have doubted. Can we say basically at some time maybe all Christians have doubted?
- Lutzer: Have you doubted, John?
- Ankerberg: I have doubted. I know you have. And the fact is, there have been people in history – you’ve got a great story, tragic story, of a believer, we think, that doubted. Tell us about him.
- Lutzer: His name was William Cowper, and many of us know him because he was a friend of John Newton who wrote Amazing Grace. And the night that William Cowper wrote these words, “God moves in a mysterious way, his wonders to perform. He plants his footsteps in the sea, and rides upon the storm,” that night, he tried to commit suicide. As a matter of fact, Cowper tried to commit suicide four times, and he even wrote a poem, which I have listed here in my book, Lines Written During a Period of Insanity. What happened is, he tried to kill himself. When he couldn’t pull it off, he believed that he was damned more than Judas.
- Now, all of that won’t be a surprise to people until they discover this. He’s the man who wrote, “There is a fountain filled with blood, drawn from Emmanuel’s veins, and sinners plunged beneath that flood, lose all their guilty stains.” Evangelicals around the world will remember that song. And then there’s that other stanza, “The dying thief rejoiced to see that fountain in his day, and there may I, though vile as he, wash all my sins away.” That man doubted and died doubting.
- Was he saved? Well, if you talk to his friends and those who knew him, they’d say, “Absolutely! This man was a lover of God. This man was concerned about his salvation. This man wanted to do all that he possibly could to make sure that he was saved.” But for some strange reason, possibly because he was abused as a child – there’s some evidence of that – he simply could not accept God’s love. He struggled with the whole business of the unpardonable sin, which we really ought to talk about because some people think they’ve committed the unpardonable sin. The good news is that anyone who thinks he has almost assuredly has not, because if you commit the unpardonable sin, you’ll have no desire for God or for forgiveness. I receive letters all the time from people who think that they’ve committed the unpardonable sin.
- But here’s a man so mightily used of the Lord and whose poetry we love. I have all of his poems or almost all of them in my library. I remember he says, “Regarding all that God has done for us in Christ,” it was Cowper who wrote those beautiful words, “How thou canst think so well of me and be the God thou art, is darkness to my intellect but sunshine to my heart.” Now the question is, why did he doubt?
- Ankerberg: Yeah. Let’s hold Cowper for a moment, but one thing that stands out that you said in your book, “There is no despair that goes so deep; there’s no depression that is so dark as the belief that one cannot, for whatever reason, be saved.”