Who do you listen to and believe? Who do you doubt?
Think about the people you would quote most often without hesitation, trusting that what they say is truth? Perhaps you regularly listen to certain radio programs, watch television shows, complete Bible studies, read books, etc. None of those things are bad, but what happens when you stop filtering what someone says through God’s truth?
People are fallible. Even people who seek God’s truth and try to teach it as authentically as possible will miscommunicate at times. Hopefully, it’s not intentional (but sometimes it is), but you’re in a danger zone when you don’t make the effort to discern what is godly and what isn’t.
Of course, many things can be taken out of context, so sometimes we can get into heated discussions about whether or not someone is correct based on the context. Isn’t our time better spent by simply asking, “What does God have to say about this?” “How does Scripture address this?” We have misunderstandings all the time. We can misread or mishear something either because it’s not communicated well or not heard or read well.
Some of us tend toward gullibility more than others. Some of us tend toward doubt more than others. All of us have access to truth.
Jesus answered, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. The only way to the Father is through me.” (John 14:6)
God works through relationships, but it’s only through a relationship with Jesus that you can intimately get to know God. Within that relationship, you are safe to question whatever you want. Jesus is secure enough to answer, and because he is truth, he cannot lie to you. Others can. Others can reflect Jesus, but they’re mere shadows. Certainly, God will use others in your life to teach you. You can and should respectfully question them; they won’t have all the answers, but as they seek God’s truth, they’ll help you seek God’s truth, too. You can and should doubt them, not necessarily in an antagonistic way but in a discerning way.
Start with Jesus. Seek him. Rest assured, you don’t need to doubt whether or not you can believe him. But even if you do, he will answer when you ask.
Ask, and God will give to you. Search, and you will find. Knock, and the door will open for you. Yes, everyone who asks will receive. Everyone who searches will find. And everyone who knocks will have the door opened. (Matthew 7:7-8)