I like “Doubting Thomas”

I’m coming to appreciate Jesus’ disciple, Thomas, in a new way. You might know him by his nickname: “Doubting Thomas.”

In John 20 we read that he wasn’t there with the other ten disciples when Jesus shows up the first time. When Thomas returns, they tell him, “We’ve seen the Lord!”

“The Incredulity of Saint Thomas” by Caravaggio

Thomas was still depressed about wasting 3 years of his life and responded with “Yea, yea! What have you guys been smoking? I want to put my fingers in those nail holes. I want PROOF!!”

Another week goes by and Jesus shows up again. Jesus again blesses them with peace because the disciples are still locked in their room hidden away.  They are acting on their doubts even though we don’t read those doubts verbally expressed.

Then Jesus turns his attention to “Doubting Thomas.” But he does not make Thomas feel embarrassed for his earlier comments. He goes specifically asks if Thomas would actually like to touch the holes. In verse 28 we read: “Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!””

Do you realize how extraordinary this is? This is the first time in the gospel of John someone has come to Jesus and directly stated: “You are God!”

John records this because the skeptic has flipped. The doubter has become the one who is the first to understand. John and his fellow disciples just internalized their doubts while hiding in their room. In some ways, Thomas was the only honest one of the bunch.

Do you have doubts about the resurrection? Good. Because God is in the business of turning honest doubters into believers.  Express those doubts.  Have honest conversations with a pastor and Christians friends.

And watch God show up. Just like he did for “Doubting Thomas.”

 

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Chris Hatch

Seeking to love God and neighbor