Doubting Doubt | Ethics Doubt | George Hinman

Matthew 21:28-32

 Review:  In the first sermon in this series, George talked about doubting our belief – asking questions, searching for truth, and doubting our unbelief – opening ourselves to transcendence or what’s beyond what we can see.  How, or what, do you doubt?  What is that like in your experience?

Introduction: You doubt. You believe. What happens when you doubt your doubts? The great Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor tells us that in our modern age, it is no longer possible for us to believe and not doubt, and it's no longer possible to doubt and not believe. We live in a secular age, and our doubts are 'haunted' by a deep suspicion that the stories we tell ourselves about reality are too small. They are haunted by a deeper sense that the story of our lives is a much bigger, much greater story than we dare to believe. Jesus understands this. Although he first lived and taught in a pre-modern age, the stories he told were meant to blow up the petty stories of any age. He wants to unsettle our unbelief and draw us into a bigger story, the great story. And this is the story that moves us--together with our doubt and our belief--into a genuine hope we can live and share. In this series we look at five parables that challenge five defining dogmas of our culture. Is it possible that we will only find resolution to the stories of our lives when we find it in Jesus? He doesn't just challenge us with his parables; he haunts us with his resurrection life!

Lord Jesus, as we encounter your teaching, may we be open to expressing our doubt, listening for your voice in the midst of it as we seek to more fully express our faith..  Amen.
Read: Matthew 21:28-32

  1. In your opinion, what is the main truth in this story?   Are there other parables or passages in scripture that you know that address the same truth?
  2. This is one of 3 parables in Matthew that fall between challenges to Jesus’ teaching by the religious leaders.  What would these parables say to the leaders?  What do you think they say to the others hearing Jesus?
  3. In our text for this week, how would you describe the 1st son?  The 2d son?
  4. If you only heard what each son had said to his father, which one would be doing the father’s will?  Why is it important to know what each one did?  What do you think your words and actions reveal about you?


Application:  This week, reflect on your words and actions, note any conflicts, and offer them up to God’s great love, trusting in His grace and forgiveness to cover any gaps as you grow to more closely follow him.

Pray:  Lord, remind us this week of your unfailing love for us and help us to act as if we believe it.  Amen.


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