I recently saw a bumper sticker on a car that said “Unbelief is OK.” Another sticker seemed to indicate that the owner of the car proclaimed to be a Christian.
What kind of world is it where a Christian (a “believer”), would say that unbelief is OK?
I suppose it might be helpful to say during a church gathering something like, “If you’re not a believer, that’s OK; we want you to be here.” Context. A welcoming message to believer and unbeliever alike.
Or, I might say to a friend, “You’re not a believer, that’s OK; I still want to be your friend.”
Or, it could rightly be said that we all have times of doubt and uncertainty, even as believers. In this context, I might say, “That’s OK; we all have times of unbelief.” Again, context.
Or I might, in crying out to God, say something like, “Lord I believe; help my unbelief!” recognizing that my faith is not as pure or as strong as it might be. And God would accept my weak expression of faith.
But a bald, unqualified statement like “Unbelief is OK” sends an erroneous and dangerous message. Unbelief is not OK. To not have faith in God or his Son Jesus Christ is eternally devastating.
The writer to the Hebrews, using the time of the wandering in the desert by the followers of Moses as an example, said that they were not able to enter the Promised Land (God’s rest) because of unbelief. “So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief” (Hebrews 3:19). It serves as a warning that unbelief will keep a person from entering God’s ultimate rest in his presence.
Now is not the time to deceive yourself with false hope by saying that unbelief is OK. Nor is it time for so-called Christians to offer such a hope. There is no hope in unbelief. Now is the time of salvation! “Take care, brothers and sisters, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called ‘today,’ that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin” (Hebrews 3:12-13).