Tim Keller tells the story of Kevin, who worked on Wall Street at J.P. Morgan. Kevin was an atheist with stubborn doubts about God. But he had doubts about his doubts, so he and his wife began attending Redeemer Church. They met believers who were smart and sophisticated. This challenged their thoughts about God.

A doubt is actually a belief in something else. Philosopher Thomas Nagel explained his doubts as an alternate belief. “It isn’t just that I don’t believe in God and, naturally, hope that I’m right in my belief…I don’t want there to be a God; I don’t want the universe to be like that.” Humans are drawn to beliefs that justify your morality, give you a cause, or explain your existence. Those beliefs are like rungs on a ladder leading to ultimate questions. If you arrive at the top and conclude that life has no meaning, hope, or joy, then dear reader it’s time to take a fresh look at your beliefs (i.e., doubts). And like Kevin, you need not do this alone.

Consider Jesus’ response to Thomas. After Jesus’ resurrection, Thomas declared that unless he saw Jesus for himself, “I will not believe.” He doubted. Jesus didn’t show impatience or anger. He came to Thomas and invited him not only to see, but touch. Thomas, no longer doubting exclaimed, “My Lord and my God!” For your benefit, Jesus then said, “Blessed are they who did not see and yet believed” (John 20). Jesus reveals the kingdom of heaven to doubters who seek. “Whoever has,” He said, “to him more shall be given” (Matt. 13). In Him doubters find answers to the ultimate questions of life.

Believers should not dismiss the skepticism of our fellow travelers. Let’s give a wide berth to condescension and disrespect. Jesus kindly engaged doubt. So should you, even if it’s only a simple explanation of the evidence for God you find convincing. Believers have the advantage – we are participating in a grand enterprise empowered by God. His kingdom comes on earth as people believe Jesus for eternal life.

Kevin tells the rest of his story. “As an atheist I thought I lived a moral… kind of life, but Christianity had an even higher standard. While sitting in a coffee shop reading C.S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity, I wrote in my notebook ‘the evidence surrounding the claims of Christianity is simply overwhelming.’ I realized that my achievements were ultimately unsatisfying… so I became a believer in Christ.” His doubts, his unbeliefs, yielded to the evidence.

A father approached Jesus on behalf of his ailing son. He pleaded, “If you can do anything…” Jesus responded, “If you can?” Realizing his faux pas the man cried, “Help my unbelief” (Mark 9:24). And there you find the doubters prayer. The Truth is not far from you.