FAITH VS. DOUBT

MOST people are familiar with the story of Peter's attempt to walk on the water, but the Master's gentle rebuke for his failure to continue doing so, is of special interest to Christian Scientists. Jesus said to Peter, "O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?" There are perhaps very few if any of us, who, even if bidden by the Master himself, as Peter was, to come to him on the water, would attempt to do so without considerable feeling of doubt. There are also very few who would attempt to put into practice, with any hope of success, the words of Jesus, "If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you." These words were uttered to the disciples when they asked for an explanation of their failure to heal a lunatic, and we, like they, seek to know why we ever fail to carry out an earnest desire to heal a disease, or it may be to change a discordant circumstance.

As Christians we believe the words of Jesus to be absolutely true; as Christian Scientists we know that the immutable, perfect law of God can bring about the desired result as a natural outcome of that law and not as a miracle, but as mortals we find that the result does not always appear. Why is this so when we ask only for what we believe to be good, when we do all we can to increase our faith, but still we do not achieve the result? Why did Peter fail? Where was his faith weak? Peter did not doubt Jesus' word or power. He had just seen Jesus himself walking on the sea, and had received the command "Come" direct from the Master himself; therefore there was every reason, humanly speaking, why he should not entertain the doubt which was evidently responsible for his failure.

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