Wednesday, August 24, 2016

I am scared I have committed apostasy

I am scared I have committed apostasy and have a seared conscience. I wish to be forgiven before it is too late! Any ideas or advice? I am a Christian believer who is 16 years old.

Just going on your age, which is one in which you are likely to experiment with ideas, I would bet that you are not an apostate. You are simply doubting, perhaps seriously, and in a way that seems at the moment irretrievably, the faith of your parents or your believing community.

To doubt is not the opposite of faith, but can be a part of it. Indeed, a great theologian (Romano Guardini) once stated that "Faith is the capacity to withstand doubt."

Note that this implies that it is normal to experience doubt. That is because faith is not knowledge, it is only belief absent knowledge. The Bible says it, "no one has seen the Father but the Son" (John 6:46). Thus, to have faith is to believe in Someone one has never seen. There may be times in which you may ask yourself how this is possible. That is a way to grow in faith; to ask questions and seek to resolve them. God gave you a brain to use.

This is a repost from my replies to questions posted on Quora, a question-and-answer site where questions are asked, answered, edited and organized by its community of users, at The questions in italics and their subtexts are not mine.

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