It was eight days after his resurrection that Jesus appeared to the disciple who is generally remembered, perhaps unfairly, as the one who was slow to believe that Jesus was indeed alive once more. But, despite the fact that ‘doubting’ Thomas is frequently given a bad press, I would like to say that I am genuinely grateful to him.
For the account that we read in John 20:26-29 reassures me that, despite those living in first century Jerusalem being just as unlikely to believe a story about a dead man coming back to life as those who are living today, so convincing was the evidence for the resurrection that, when presented with it, even a dyed in the wool sceptic like Thomas could not help but believe that the seemingly unbelievable had in fact taken place. And so, face to face with the risen Christ, an intellectually honest Thomas followed that evidence and rightly declared Jesus to be both his Lord and his God.
After Thomas believed the evidence that his eyes would not allow him to deny, Jesus said to him, ‘Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’ In saying these words Jesus was referring to us. But the reason that we can believe without seeing is, partly, the result of Thomas not being able to believe until he did see.
John tells us that he wrote his gospel so that we might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that, by believing, we may have life in his name [John 20:31]. Our faith, therefore, is partly down to the fact that Thomas’ story was there to be recorded, a story of one who, initially doubtful, demanded the evidence that we all need if we are to have confidence that a faith placed in Jesus is a faith placed in one who can be wholly depended upon.
Confident then that He really is alive, may we, like Thomas, follow the evidence and, therefore, gladly recognise Jesus to be our Lord and our God too.
For, thanks in part to Thomas, we all have very good reason to do so!
To read ‘Good Friday 2022’, click here
To read “Easter Sunday – 2021”, click here
To read, ‘The Resurrection – is it Rhubarb?’, click here
To read, ‘Real Love?’, click here
To read ‘Real Power’, click here
To read, ‘But this I know’, click here
To read “Hope comes from believing the promises of God”, click here
To read “Waiting patiently for the Lord”, click here