Doubt and unbelief a bible study
Doubt and unbelief bible study
I am now led to do a bible study on something that even has been and is a challenge even for me. I have my doubts at times, but I do need to stand firm on all the promises of the Lord has made, and their fulfillment in every believer’s life. What He has started He will finishThe first example of doubt and unbelief is where Sarah doubted and laughed to herself about her having a child at her old age, but the Lord noticed and reacted (proving that nothing is ever hidden from the Lord, as well, either)
(Genesis 18:9) They said to him, "Where is Sarah your wife?" And he said, "She is in the tent."
(Genesis 18:10) The LORD said, "I will surely return to you about this time next year, and Sarah your wife shall have a son." And Sarah was listening at the tent door behind him.
(Genesis 18:11) Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in years. The way of women had ceased to be with Sarah.
(Genesis 18:12) So Sarah laughed to herself, saying, "After I am worn out, and my lord is old, shall I have pleasure?"
(Genesis 18:13) The LORD said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh and say, 'Shall I indeed bear a child, now that I am old?'
(Genesis 18:14) Is anything too hard for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, about this time next year, and Sarah shall have a son."
(Genesis 18:15) But Sarah denied it, saying, "I did not laugh," for she was afraid. He said, "No, but you did laugh."
The Lord had mercy on her, and said nothing is too hard for Him, which is something we ourselves also must remember. The Lord was merciful though in this instance, for Sarah would indeed go on and have this son, namely, Isaac. Here in the second instance the Lord was merciful to Lot and his family and the angels forcibly took them by the hand and moved them out of the way, even accepting a request of theirs. Sadly though Lot’s wife looked back when told not to and was transformed into a pillar of salt:
(Genesis 19:12) Then the men said to Lot, "Have you anyone else here? Sons-in-law, sons, daughters, or anyone you have in the city, bring them out of the place.
(Gen 19:13) For we are about to destroy this place, because the outcry against its people has become great before the LORD, and the LORD has sent us to destroy it."
(Genesis 19:14) So Lot went out and said to his sons-in-law, who were to marry his daughters, "Up! Get out of this place, for the LORD is about to destroy the city." But he seemed to his sons-in-law to be jesting.
(Genesis 19:15) As morning dawned, the angels urged Lot, saying, "Up! Take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be swept away in the punishment of the city."
(Genesis 19:16) But he lingered. So the men seized him and his wife and his two daughters by the hand, the LORD being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the city.
(Genesis 19:17) And as they brought them out, one said, "Escape for your life. Do not look back or stop anywhere in the valley. Escape to the hills, lest you be swept away."
(Genesis 19:18) And Lot said to them, "Oh, no, my lords.
(Genesis 19:19) Behold, your servant has found favor in your sight, and you have shown me great kindness in saving my life. But I cannot escape to the hills, lest the disaster overtake me and I die.
(Genesis 19:20) Behold, this city is near enough to flee to, and it is a little one. Let me escape there--is it not a little one?--and my life will be saved!"
(Genesis 19:21) He said to him, "Behold, I grant you this favor also, that I will not overthrow the city of which you have spoken.
(Genesis 19:22) Escape there quickly, for I can do nothing till you arrive there." Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar.
(Genesis 19:23) The sun had risen on the earth when Lot came to Zoar.
(Genesis 19:24) Then the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from the LORD out of heaven.
(Genesis 19:25) And he overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground.
(Genesis 19:26) But Lot's wife, behind him, looked back, and she became a pillar of salt.
(Genesis 19:27) And Abraham went early in the morning to the place where he had stood before the LORD.
(Genesis 19:28) And he looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah and toward all the land of the valley, and he looked and, behold, the smoke of the land went up like the smoke of a furnace.
(Genesis 19:29) So it was that, when God destroyed the cities of the valley, God remembered Abraham and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow when he overthrew the cities in which Lot had lived.
When God commissioned Moses to deliver the children of Israel from Egypt, Moses really doubted that anyone would ever listen to him, nor that none would believe him and what he said either, and his God given ability, and authority really trying God who even got mad with Moses for that:
(Exodus 4:1) Then Moses answered, "But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice, for they will say, 'The LORD did not appear to you.'"
(Exodus 4:2) The LORD said to him, "What is that in your hand?" He said, "A staff."
(Exodus 4:3) And he said, "Throw it on the ground." So he threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses ran from it.
(Exodus 4:4) But the LORD said to Moses, "Put out your hand and catch it by the tail"--so he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand--
(Exodus 4:5) "that they may believe that the LORD, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you."
(Exodus 4:6) Again, the LORD said to him, "Put your hand inside your cloak." And he put his hand inside his cloak, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous like snow.
(Exodus 4:7) Then God said, "Put your hand back inside your cloak." So he put his hand back inside his cloak, and when he took it out, behold, it was restored like the rest of his flesh.
(Exodus 4:8) "If they will not believe you," God said, "or listen to the first sign, they may believe the latter sign.
(Exodus 4:9) If they will not believe even these two signs or listen to your voice, you shall take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground, and the water that you shall take from the Nile will become blood on the dry ground."
(Exodus 4:10) But Moses said to the LORD, "Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue."
(Exodus 4:11) Then the LORD said to him, "Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the LORD?
(Exodus 4:12) Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak."
(Exodus 4:13) But he said, "Oh, my Lord, please send someone else."
(Exodus 4:14) Then the anger of the LORD was kindled against Moses and he said, "Is there not Aaron, your brother, the Levite? I know that he can speak well. Behold, he is coming out to meet you, and when he sees you, he will be glad in his heart.
(Exodus 4:15) You shall speak to him and put the words in his mouth, and I will be with your mouth and with his mouth and will teach you both what to do.
(Exodus 4:16) He shall speak for you to the people, and he shall be your mouth, and you shall be as God to him.
(Exodus 4:17) And take in your hand this staff, with which you shall do the signs."
(Exodus 4:18) Moses went back to Jethro his father-in-law and said to him, "Please let me go back to my brothers in Egypt to see whether they are still alive." And Jethro said to Moses, "Go in peace."
(Exodus 4:19) And the LORD said to Moses in Midian, "Go back to Egypt, for all the men who were seeking your life are dead."
(Exodus 4:20) So Moses took his wife and his sons and had them ride on a donkey, and went back to the land of Egypt. And Moses took the staff of God in his hand.
(Exodus 4:21) And the LORD said to Moses, "When you go back to Egypt, see that you do before Pharaoh all the miracles that I have put in your power. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go.
(Exodus 4:22) Then you shall say to Pharaoh, 'Thus says the LORD, Israel is my firstborn son,
(Exodus 4:23) and I say to you, "Let my son go that he may serve me." If you refuse to let him go, behold, I will kill your firstborn son.'"
(Exodus 4:24) At a lodging place on the way the LORD met him and sought to put him to death.
(Exodus 4:25) Then Zipporah took a flint and cut off her son's foreskin and touched Moses' feet with it and said, "Surely you are a bridegroom of blood to me!"
(Exodus 4:26) So he let him alone. It was then that she said, "A bridegroom of blood," because of the circumcision.
(Exodus 4:27) The LORD said to Aaron, "Go into the wilderness to meet Moses." So he went and met him at the mountain of God and kissed him.
(Exodus 4:28) And Moses told Aaron all the words of the LORD with which he had sent him to speak, and all the signs that he had commanded him to do.
(Exodus 4:29) Then Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the people of Israel.
(Exodus 4:30) Aaron spoke all the words that the LORD had spoken to Moses and did the signs in the sight of the people.
(Exodus 4:31) And the people believed; and when they heard that the LORD had visited the people of Israel and that he had seen their affliction, they bowed their heads and worshiped.
Then after they were delivered they grumbled because they had nothing to eat, which is a type of unbelief and doubt, saying that the Lord brought them up from Egypt to starve in the wilderness:
(Exodus 16:1) They set out from Elim, and all the congregation of the people of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had departed from the land of Egypt.
(Exodus 16:2) And the whole congregation of the people of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness,
(Exodus 16:3) and the people of Israel said to them, "Would that we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the meat pots and ate bread to the full, for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger."
(Exodus 16:4) Then the LORD said to Moses, "Behold, I am about to rain bread from heaven for you, and the people shall go out and gather a day's portion every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in my law or not.
(Exodus 16:5) On the sixth day, when they prepare what they bring in, it will be twice as much as they gather daily."
(Exodus 16:6) So Moses and Aaron said to all the people of Israel, "At evening you shall know that it was the LORD who brought you out of the land of Egypt,
(Exodus 16:7) and in the morning you shall see the glory of the LORD, because he has heard your grumbling against the LORD. For what are we, that you grumble against us?"
(Exodus 16:8) And Moses said, "When the LORD gives you in the evening meat to eat and in the morning bread to the full, because the LORD has heard your grumbling that you grumble against him--what are we? Your grumbling is not against us but against the LORD."
(Exodus 16:9) Then Moses said to Aaron, "Say to the whole congregation of the people of Israel, 'Come near before the LORD, for he has heard your grumbling.'"
(Exodus 16:10) And as soon as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the people of Israel, they looked toward the wilderness, and behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud.
(Exodus 16:11) And the LORD said to Moses,
(Exodus 16:12) "I have heard the grumbling of the people of Israel. Say to them, 'At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread. Then you shall know that I am the LORD your God.'"
(Exodus 16:13) In the evening quail came up and covered the camp, and in the morning dew lay around the camp.
(Exodus 16:14) And when the dew had gone up, there was on the face of the wilderness a fine, flake-like thing, fine as frost on the ground.
(Exodus 16:15) When the people of Israel saw it, they said to one another, "What is it?" For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, "It is the bread that the LORD has given you to eat.
(Exodus 16:16) This is what the LORD has commanded: 'Gather of it, each one of you, as much as he can eat. You shall each take an omer, according to the number of the persons that each of you has in his tent.'"
(Exodus 16:17) And the people of Israel did so. They gathered, some more, some less.
(Exodus 16:18) But when they measured it with an omer, whoever gathered much had nothing left over, and whoever gathered little had no lack. Each of them gathered as much as he could eat.
(Exodus 16:19) And Moses said to them, "Let no one leave any of it over till the morning."
(Exodus 16:20) But they did not listen to Moses. Some left part of it till the morning, and it bred worms and stank. And Moses was angry with them.
They then did the same thing about water, and their lack of it, too, which shows their lack of full trust in the Lord on those issues:
(Exodus 17:1) All the congregation of the people of Israel moved on from the wilderness of Sin by stages, according to the commandment of the LORD, and camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink.
(Exodus 17:2) Therefore the people quarreled with Moses and said, "Give us water to drink." And Moses said to them, "Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test the LORD?"
(Exodus 17:3) But the people thirsted there for water, and the people grumbled against Moses and said, "Why did you bring us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?"
(Exodus 17:4) So Moses cried to the LORD, "What shall I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me."
(Exodus 17:5) And the LORD said to Moses, "Pass on before the people, taking with you some of the elders of Israel, and take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go.
(Exodus 17:6) Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb, and you shall strike the rock, and water shall come out of it, and the people will drink." And Moses did so, in the sight of the elders of Israel.
(Exodus 17:7) And he called the name of the place Massah and Meribah, because of the quarreling of the people of Israel, and because they tested the LORD by saying, "Is the LORD among us or not?"
Moses even named the place in verse 7 because the people doubted whether the Lord really was with them. Another story of doubt is when Moses sent spies to check out the promised land, the land promised them even as far back as Abraham, Joshua and Caleb believed that they could succeed, trusting God to deliver the land to them, but the others who had gone made bad reports that caused the people to not believe in their God, and even rebel, wanting to go back to Egypt, here is the story:
(Numbers 14:1) Then all the congregation raised a loud cry, and the people wept that night.
(Numbers 14:2) And all the people of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron. The whole congregation said to them, "Would that we had died in the land of Egypt! Or would that we had died in this wilderness!
(Numbers 14:3) Why is the LORD bringing us into this land, to fall by the sword? Our wives and our little ones will become a prey. Would it not be better for us to go back to Egypt?"
(Numbers 14:4) And they said to one another, "Let us choose a leader and go back to Egypt."
(Numbers 14:5) Then Moses and Aaron fell on their faces before all the assembly of the congregation of the people of Israel.
(Numbers 14:6) And Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes
(Numbers 14:7) and said to all the congregation of the people of Israel, "The land, which we passed through to spy it out, is an exceedingly good land.
(Numbers 14:8) If the LORD delights in us, he will bring us into this land and give it to us, a land that flows with milk and honey.
(Numbers 14:9) Only do not rebel against the LORD. And do not fear the people of the land, for they are bread for us. Their protection is removed from them, and the LORD is with us; do not fear them."
(Numbers 14:10) Then all the congregation said to stone them with stones. But the glory of the LORD appeared at the tent of meeting to all the people of Israel.
(Numbers 14:11) And the LORD said to Moses, "How long will this people despise me? And how long will they not believe in me, in spite of all the signs that I have done among them?
(Numbers 14:12) I will strike them with the pestilence and disinherit them, and I will make of you a nation greater and mightier than they."
(Numbers 14:13) But Moses said to the LORD, "Then the Egyptians will hear of it, for you brought up this people in your might from among them,
(Numbers 14:14) and they will tell the inhabitants of this land. They have heard that you, O LORD, are in the midst of this people. For you, O LORD, are seen face to face, and your cloud stands over them and you go before them, in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night.
(Numbers 14:15) Now if you kill this people as one man, then the nations who have heard your fame will say,
(Numbers 14:16) 'It is because the LORD was not able to bring this people into the land that he swore to give to them that he has killed them in the wilderness.'
(Numbers 14:17) And now, please let the power of the Lord be great as you have promised, saying,
(Numbers 14:18) 'The LORD is slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, forgiving iniquity and transgression, but he will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, to the third and the fourth generation.'
(Numbers 14:19) Please pardon the iniquity of this people, according to the greatness of your steadfast love, just as you have forgiven this people, from Egypt until now."
(Numbers 14:20) Then the LORD said, "I have pardoned, according to your word.
(Numbers 14:21) But truly, as I live, and as all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD,
(Numbers 14:22) none of the men who have seen my glory and my signs that I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and yet have put me to the test these ten times and have not obeyed my voice,
(Numbers 14:23) shall see the land that I swore to give to their fathers. And none of those who despised me shall see it.
(Numbers 14:24) But my servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit and has followed me fully, I will bring into the land into which he went, and his descendants shall possess it.
(Numbers 14:25) Now, since the Amalekites and the Canaanites dwell in the valleys, turn tomorrow and set out for the wilderness by the way to the Red Sea."
(Numbers 14:26) And the LORD spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,
(Numbers 14:27) "How long shall this wicked congregation grumble against me? I have heard the grumblings of the people of Israel, which they grumble against me.
(Numbers 14:28) Say to them, 'As I live, declares the LORD, what you have said in my hearing I will do to you:
(Numbers 14:29) your dead bodies shall fall in this wilderness, and of all your number, listed in the census from twenty years old and upward, who have grumbled against me,
(Numbers 14:30) not one shall come into the land where I swore that I would make you dwell, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.
(Numbers 14:31) But your little ones, who you said would become a prey, I will bring in, and they shall know the land that you have rejected.
(Numbers 14:32) But as for you, your dead bodies shall fall in this wilderness.
(Numbers 14:33) And your children shall be shepherds in the wilderness forty years and shall suffer for your faithlessness, until the last of your dead bodies lies in the wilderness.
(Numbers 14:34) According to the number of the days in which you spied out the land, forty days, a year for each day, you shall bear your iniquity forty years, and you shall know my displeasure.'
(Numbers 14:35) I, the LORD, have spoken. Surely this will I do to all this wicked congregation who are gathered together against me: in this wilderness they shall come to a full end, and there they shall die."
(Numbers 14:36) And the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land, who returned and made all the congregation grumble against him by bringing up a bad report about the land--
(Numbers 14:37) the men who brought up a bad report of the land--died by plague before the LORD.
(Numbers 14:38) Of those men who went to spy out the land, only Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh remained alive.
Because of their unbelief (also rebellion caused by their doubting that God would deliver the inhabitants of the land to them, they then were then doomed to wander in the wilderness for 40 years, and only Joshua and Caleb survived this wandering period because they had faith, and did not doubt. In Numbers 20, again the people would grumble over no water (itself showing unbelief) also this time Moses and Aaron disobeyed God and struck the rock twice when God told them to they only had speak to the rock to have the water flow from the rock:
(Numbers 20:1) And the people of Israel, the whole congregation, came into the wilderness of Zin in the first month, and the people stayed in Kadesh. And Miriam died there and was buried there.
(Numbers 20:2) Now there was no water for the congregation. And they assembled themselves together against Moses and against Aaron.
(Numbers 20:3) And the people quarreled with Moses and said, "Would that we had perished when our brothers perished before the LORD!
(Numbers 20:4) Why have you brought the assembly of the LORD into this wilderness, that we should die here, both we and our cattle?
(Numbers 20:5) And why have you made us come up out of Egypt to bring us to this evil place? It is no place for grain or figs or vines or pomegranates, and there is no water to drink."
(Numbers 20:6) Then Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly to the entrance of the tent of meeting and fell on their faces. And the glory of the LORD appeared to them,
(Numbers 20:7) and the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,
(Numbers 20:8) "Take the staff, and assemble the congregation, you and Aaron your brother, and tell the rock before their eyes to yield its water. So you shall bring water out of the rock for them and give drink to the congregation and their cattle."
(Numbers 20:9) And Moses took the staff from before the LORD, as he commanded him.
(Numbers 20:10) Then Moses and Aaron gathered the assembly together before the rock, and he said to them, "Hear now, you rebels: shall we bring water for you out of this rock?"
(Numbers 20:11) And Moses lifted up his hand and struck the rock with his staff twice, and water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their livestock.
(Numbers 20:12) And the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, "Because you did not believe in me, to uphold me as holy in the eyes of the people of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land that I have given them."
(Numbers 20:13) These are the waters of Meribah, where the people of Israel quarreled with the LORD, and through them he showed himself holy.
This act of unbelief and doubt would end up costing Moses and Aaron the chance to enter the Promised Land with the people of Israel. Indeed Aaron would die later in the same chapter, due to their (his and Moses’) unbelief:
(Numbers 20:24) "Let Aaron be gathered to his people, for he shall not enter the land that I have given to the people of Israel, because you rebelled against my command at the waters of Meribah.
In this and in many other cases unbelief often leads to rebellion against God so we must be especially careful. In the last two examples this unbelief did lead to rebellion with severe consequences for everyone. Moses and Aaron had a very hard time with the children of Israel who continually vexed them throughout their journey, and there are other instances of unbelief that I did not cover here that could be mentioned.
These incidents are also spoken in Chapter 3 of Hebrews which says these people above couldn’t enter into God’s rest due to their unbelief:
(Hebrews 3:1) Therefore, holy brothers, you who share in a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the apostle and high priest of our confession,
(Hebrews 3:2) who was faithful to him who appointed him, just as Moses also was faithful in all God's house.
(Hebrews 3:3) For Jesus has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses--as much more glory as the builder of a house has more honor than the house itself.
(Hebrews 3:4) (For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God.)
(Hebrews 3:5) Now Moses was faithful in all God's house as a servant, to testify to the things that were to be spoken later,
(Hebrews 3:6) but Christ is faithful over God's house as a son. And we are his house if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.
(Hebrews 3:7) Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, "Today, if you hear his voice,
(Hebrews 3:8) do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness,
(Hebrews 3:9) where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works for forty years.
(Hebrews 3:10) Therefore I was provoked with that generation, and said, 'They always go astray in their heart; they have not known my ways.'
(Hebrews 3:11) As I swore in my wrath, 'They shall not enter my rest.'"
(Hebrews 3:12) Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.
(Hebrews 3:13) But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called "today," that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
(Hebrews 3:14) For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.
(Hebrews 3:15) As it is said, "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion."
(Hebrews 3:16) For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses?
(Hebrews 3:17) And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness?
(Hebrews 3:18) And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient?
(Hebrews 3:19) So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.
Gideon would test the Lord as well, wanting to be certain that he was to be used to save Israel from Midian, even though an angel visited him earlier in the same chapter, showing Gideon had some doubts still that God wanted to use him to deliver the people of Israel from the Midian invasion.
(Judges 6:36) Then Gideon said to God, "If you will save Israel by my hand, as you have said,
(Judges 6:37) behold, I am laying a fleece of wool on the threshing floor. If there is dew on the fleece alone, and it is dry on all the ground, then I shall know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you have said."
(Judges 6:38) And it was so. When he rose early next morning and squeezed the fleece, he wrung enough dew from the fleece to fill a bowl with water.
(Judges 6:39) Then Gideon said to God, "Let not your anger burn against me; let me speak just once more. Please let me test just once more with the fleece. Please let it be dry on the fleece only, and on all the ground let there be dew."
(Judges 6:40) And God did so that night; and it was dry on the fleece only, and on all the ground there was dew.
God was gracious and granted this request both times he made it even though it is almost unbelief for Gideon to make those requests to start out with, doubting his calling.
Here is the story of a captain who did not believe what Elijah had prophesied about food becoming very plentiful and cheap in Samaria after famine was trampled to death as a result of his unbelief in the prophecy of Elisha and in the work of God
(2 Kings 7:1) But Elisha said, "Hear the word of the LORD: thus says the LORD, Tomorrow about this time a seah of fine flour shall be sold for a shekel, and two seahs of barley for a shekel, at the gate of Samaria."
(2 Kings 7:2) Then the captain on whose hand the king leaned said to the man of God, "If the LORD himself should make windows in heaven, could this thing be?" But he said, "You shall see it with your own eyes, but you shall not eat of it."
(2 Kings 7:3) Now there were four men who were lepers at the entrance to the gate. And they said to one another, "Why are we sitting here until we die?
(2 Kings 7:4) If we say, 'Let us enter the city,' the famine is in the city, and we shall die there. And if we sit here, we die also. So now come, let us go over to the camp of the Syrians. If they spare our lives we shall live, and if they kill us we shall but die."
(2 Kings 7:5) So they arose at twilight to go to the camp of the Syrians. But when they came to the edge of the camp of the Syrians, behold, there was no one there.
(2 Kings 7:6) For the Lord had made the army of the Syrians hear the sound of chariots and of horses, the sound of a great army, so that they said to one another, "Behold, the king of Israel has hired against us the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Egypt to come against us."
(2 Kings 7:7) So they fled away in the twilight and abandoned their tents, their horses, and their donkeys, leaving the camp as it was, and fled for their lives.
(2 Kings 7:8) And when these lepers came to the edge of the camp, they went into a tent and ate and drank, and they carried off silver and gold and clothing and went and hid them. Then they came back and entered another tent and carried off things from it and went and hid them.
(2 Kings 7:9) Then they said to one another, "We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news. If we are silent and wait until the morning light, punishment will overtake us. Now therefore come; let us go and tell the king's household."
(2 Kings 7:10) So they came and called to the gatekeepers of the city and told them, "We came to the camp of the Syrians, and behold, there was no one to be seen or heard there, nothing but the horses tied and the donkeys tied and the tents as they were."
(2 Kings 7:11) Then the gatekeepers called out, and it was told within the king's household.
(2 Kings 7:12) And the king rose in the night and said to his servants, "I will tell you what the Syrians have done to us. They know that we are hungry. Therefore they have gone out of the camp to hide themselves in the open country, thinking, 'When they come out of the city, we shall take them alive and get into the city.'"
(2 Kings 7:13) And one of his servants said, "Let some men take five of the remaining horses, seeing that those who are left here will fare like the whole multitude of Israel who have already perished. Let us send and see."
(2 Kings 7:14) So they took two horsemen, and the king sent them after the army of the Syrians, saying, "Go and see."
(2 Kings 7:15) So they went after them as far as the Jordan, and behold, all the way was littered with garments and equipment that the Syrians had thrown away in their haste. And the messengers returned and told the king.
(2 Kings 7:16) Then the people went out and plundered the camp of the Syrians. So a seah of fine flour was sold for a shekel, and two seahs of barley for a shekel, according to the word of the LORD.
(2 Kings 7:17) Now the king had appointed the captain on whose hand he leaned to have charge of the gate. And the people trampled him in the gate, so that he died, as the man of God had said when the king came down to him.
(2 Kings 7:18) For when the man of God had said to the king, "Two seahs of barley shall be sold for a shekel, and a seah of fine flour for a shekel, about this time tomorrow in the gate of Samaria,"
(2 Kings 7:19) the captain had answered the man of God, "If the LORD himself should make windows in heaven, could such a thing be?" And he had said, "You shall see it with your own eyes, but you shall not eat of it."
(2 Kings 7:20) And so it happened to him, for the people trampled him in the gate and he died.
Here is another story where king Joash of Israel did not fully believe in a prophecy by Elisha of him ending Syria:
(2 Kings 13:14) Now when Elisha had fallen sick with the illness of which he was to die, Joash king of Israel went down to him and wept before him, crying, "My father, my father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!"
(2 Kings 13:15) And Elisha said to him, "Take a bow and arrows." So he took a bow and arrows.
(2 Kings 13:16) Then he said to the king of Israel, "Draw the bow," and he drew it. And Elisha laid his hands on the king's hands.
(2 Kings 13:17) And he said, "Open the window eastward," and he opened it. Then Elisha said, "Shoot," and he shot. And he said, "The LORD's arrow of victory, the arrow of victory over Syria! For you shall fight the Syrians in Aphek until you have made an end of them."
(2 Kings 13:18) And he said, "Take the arrows," and he took them. And he said to the king of Israel, "Strike the ground with them." And he struck three times and stopped.
(2 Kings 13:19) Then the man of God was angry with him and said, "You should have struck five or six times; then you would have struck down Syria until you had made an end of it, but now you will strike down Syria only three times."
As Elisha said he should have struck the arrows five or six times, showing more faith, but he did it only three times so Syria still survived and then would later conquer Israel.
Jesus Himself had to deal with a lot of unbelief first from the people in Nazareth where He lived:
(Mark 6:1) He went away from there and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him.
(Mark 6:2) And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, "Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands?
(Mark 6:3) Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?" And they took offense at him.
(Mark 6:4) And Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household."
(Mark 6:5) And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them.
Peter’s own doubt and unbelief ( as well as fear caused by the storm) in his God given miraculous ability helped caused him to fail at walking across the water to Jesus. Jesus Himself believed that Peter could:
(Matthew 14:25) And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea.
(Matthew 14:26) But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, "It is a ghost!" and they cried out in fear.
(Matthew 14:27) But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, "Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid."
(Matthew 14:28) And Peter answered him, "Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water."
(Matthew 14:29) He said, "Come." So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus.
(Matthew 14:30) But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, "Lord, save me."
(Matthew 14:31) Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?"
(Matthew 14:32) And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.
(Matthew 14:33) And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God."
(Matthew 14:34) And when they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret.
His disciples’ doubt and unbelief was also a cause of their failure to cast out the demon in this scripture as Jesus points out:
(Matthew 17:14) And when they came to the crowd, a man came up to him and, kneeling before him,
(Matthew 17:15) said, "Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and he suffers terribly. For often he falls into the fire, and often into the water.
(Matthew 17:16) And I brought him to your disciples, and they could not heal him."
(Matthew 17:17) And Jesus answered, "O faithless and twisted generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me."
(Matthew 17:18) And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him, and the boy was healed instantly.
(Matthew 17:19) Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, "Why could we not cast it out?"
(Matthew 17:20) He said to them, "Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you."
(Matthew 17:21) [But this kind never comes out except by prayer and fasting.]
Jesus had to rebuke His disciples for not believing the women telling that He was risen from the dead, even though Jesus had prophesied just such an occurrence repeatedly to His disciples before He went to the cross to die:
(Mark 16:10) She went and told those who had been with him, as they mourned and wept.
(Mark 16:11) But when they heard that he was alive and had been seen by her, they would not believe it.
(Mark 16:12) After these things he appeared in another form to two of them, as they were walking into the country.
(Mark 16:13) And they went back and told the rest, but they did not believe them.
(Mark 16:14) Afterward he appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at table, and he rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen.
Here is the famous doubting Thomas scripture, where Thomas doubted Jesus had risen, not believing the other disciples’ words:
(John 20:24) Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came.
(John 20:25) So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe."
(John 20:26) Eight days later, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you."
(John 20:27) Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe."
(John 20:28) Thomas answered him, "My Lord and my God!"
(John 20:29) Jesus said to him, "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."
Paul gives a warning in Romans about unbelief to all of the Gentiles(including us nowadays, too) about how and why they as wild branches were grafted in to the kingdom of God’s tree all for God’s glory and purposes, so we need to believe or this grafting into the tree can indeed be undone, as well:
(Romans 11:13) Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry
(Romans 11:14) in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and thus save some of them.
(Romans 11:15) For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean but life from the dead?
(Romans 11:16) If the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, so is the whole lump, and if the root is holy, so are the branches.
(Romans 11:17) But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree,
(Romans 11:18) do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you.
(Romans 11:19) Then you will say, "Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in."
(Romans 11:20) That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud, but fear.
(Romans 11:21) For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you.
(Romans 11:22) Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God's kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise you too will be cut off.
(Romans 11:23) And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again.
(Romans 11:24) For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree.
(Romans 11:25) Lest you be wise in your own sight, I want you to understand this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.
There is an even stronger warning in Revelation about unbelief, stating how those who do not believe are to be consigned to the lake of fire, which is the second death:
(Revelation 21:6) And he said to me, "It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment.
(Revelation 21:7) The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son.
(Revelation 21:8) But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death."
The thing is, if we fail to have faith in the finished work on the cross, then we are really truly not saved at all, so we need to believe in this to be saved! That is supported by what is said in Romans chapter 10 in the following verses:
(Romans 10:8) But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart" (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim);
(Romans 10:9) because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
(Romans 10:10) For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.
(Romans 10:11) For the Scripture says, "Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame."
(Romans 10:12) For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him.
(Romans 10:13) For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
(Romans 10:14) How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?
(Romans 10:15) And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!"
(Romans 10:16) But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, "Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?"
(Romans 10:17) So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
If we do have doubt and unbelief let us all be like this demon- possessed boy’s father:
(Mark 9:23) And Jesus said to him, "'If you can'! All things are possible for one who believes."
(Mark 9:24) Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, "I believe; help my unbelief!"
That is what He said to Jesus Help my unbelief. This is also in Matthew 17(above)
Here are a couple more scriptures to encourage our belief and faith in God, what He is capable of. First the fig tree one:
(Mark 11:21) And Peter remembered and said to him, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered."
(Mark 11:22) And Jesus answered them, "Have faith in God.
(Mark 11:23) Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be taken up and thrown into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him.
(Mark 11:24) Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
(Mark 11:25) And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses."
(Mark 11:26) [But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your trespasses.]
Please also note the reminder to be forgiving of others when they might offend so that our Heavenly Father can also forgive us of our wrongdoings.
Here also is this very powerful promise in John 14 for those who believe in Jesus, not also in the verses Phillip doubts about seeing the Father, asking to see Him
(John 14:8) Philip said to him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us."
(John 14:9) Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?
(John 14:10) Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works.
(John 14:11) Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves.
(John 14:12) "Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.
(John 14:13) Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
(John 14:14) If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.
Here is a prayer to help deal with removing any doubt and unbelief that you may be struggling with at this time, so please do pray this prayer with me to help you deal with any issues of doubt and unbelief:
Lord, help me to draw nearer and nearer to You with absolute confidence and trust in Your saving power, mercy, grace, and love. Free me from any and all doubt and unbelief that I may have so that I may approach You confidently and pray boldly with expectant faith. Let Your kingdom come and may your will be done in me and through me. Father, I have not applied the faith that you have given me at times, and in the way I should. I have allowed doubt and unbelief to enter into my life. I confess this as sin, choosing to repent of any and all doubt and unbelief I may have about anything at all, and choose to return to You in trust, believing. Forgive me in Jesus Name and strengthen my faith further, so I doubt Your promises no more. In the mighty Name of Jesus I ask all this, Amen.
Jesus loves you and wants to save you so you do not end up in the lake of fire talked about in the book of Revelation. He also longs for a relationship with you because He loves you such much, that He took all of our sins to Calvary and died for them- all of them- there. To be saved or to come back to Him all you do need to do is to pray this prayer with me in faith, believing:
Dear God in heaven, I come to you in the name of Jesus. I acknowledge to You that I am a sinner, and I am sorry for my sins and the life that I have lived; I need your forgiveness. I believe that your only begotten Son Jesus Christ shed His precious blood on the cross at Calvary and died for my sins, and I am now willing to turn from my sin. You said in Your Holy Word, Romans 10:9 that if we confess Jesus as our Lord and believe in our hearts that God raised Jesus from the dead, we will be saved. Right now I confess Jesus as the Lord of my soul. With my heart, I believe that God raised Jesus from the dead. This very moment I accept Jesus Christ as my own personal Savior and according to His Word, right now I am saved. Thank you Jesus for your unlimited grace which has saved me from my sins. I thank you Jesus that your grace never leads to license, but rather it always leads to repentance. Therefore Lord Jesus transform my life so that I may bring glory and honor to you alone and not to myself. Thank you Jesus for dying for me and giving me eternal life.
God bless you and yours