I am thinking about what it means to know something and to know it with as little doubt as possible. As I pray about this, what I want is to believe in faith about things ‘without any doubting’ as James says (1:16). To have this kind of unflappable knowing takes some strong experiences and testing of ones ‘belief system.’ To know ‘without a doubt’ is pure faith.
After the withering of the fig tree, Jesus said to Peter, “Have faith in God. Truly, I tell you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘be lifted up and thrown into the sea! And does not doubt at all in his heart but believes that what he says will take place; it will be done for him. For this reason I am telling you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that it is granted to you, and you will get it” (Mark 11: 22-24). This takes a great deal of thought and understanding to process or it takes no thought and understanding. To analyze faith is sometimes to destroy faith. Faith is to believe something and not to think about it in the sense of calculation and premeditation. Jesus started this text by simply saying, ‘Have faith in God,’ and that is the greatest challenge of faith: ‘to have faith in God’ instead of faith in our own abilities and intellect.
Confirmation of what we know is attained in a number of ways. John says it is “what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes and have touched with our hands” (1 John 1:1ff) and then he says, “what we have seen and heard we proclaim” (1:3). This is what he calls ‘to bear witness’ (1:2) and this means we tell what we believe. Our testimony is declaration, or an affirmation, of what we believe. We testify to the level of our experience and we testify further by faith, believing in what we have yet to experience. That is our witness.
“Have faith in God.” Jesus