Do you sometimes worry about your faith because you find yourself questioning some events in the scriptures? Let’s be honest – seas parting, a fish swallowing a grown man, the turning of water into wine, Jesus rising from the dead; sometimes biblical events can test your capacity for belief. But realize that you are in some pretty good company. Take the claim of the virgin birth. Not only have many people had their doubts about it, so did Joseph and Mary!
How did Mary respond when told she was going to birth the Son of God? After the initial shock was absorbed, she immediately began to argue with an angel! Right off the bat she asked the angel what she considered to be a rhetorical question: “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” That angel must have had a mighty convincing answer to that question! Mary doubted and then believed the word of God through the angel.
And then when Mary told Joseph, he didn’t buy it for a minute. He knew he wasn’t the daddy and immediately made plans to dump her. Once again, it took an angel to convince him that Mary was telling the truth. Joseph doubted and then believed the word of God through the angel.
So if you find yourself feeling guilty for harboring occasional doubts, relax. You are in good company. There is no sin in doubting. Doubts only become sin when we begin to believe them as fact. And we are more fortunate than Mary and Joseph with the claims about Jesus’ virgin birth. We don’t need angels. We have the written, historical word of God.