Doubting Thomas .. a man like us
Bible Study: John 20:25-29
Thomas is in every man – we all have doubt . He hadn’t yet seen the resurrected Jesus, though he’d heard, as you and I have heard, that Jesus had risen from the dead. Angry, hurt, and confused, he resisted believing the accounts of the resurrection that his very friends had told him about, yet these accounts that came from trusted friends .. the people he had lived his life with for three years.
Thomas was no stranger to resurrection. With his own eyes, he’d seen Jesus raise Lazarus from the dead and he had believed. But he had also personally seen Jesus crucified, and that’s when his dream of the kingdom died. Crucifixion seemed more powerful than resurrection, more final. His faith crumbled; and his hope was crushed.
Then Jesus appeared alive, and gently said, “Peace be with you,” offering Thomas all the proof he needed. The proof he personally needed. Resurrection, it turns out, was more permanent than death.
Face it: Believing in resurrection isn’t easy no matter how many people tell you it happened. Jesus still has to bring us to belief, to give our hearts and minds and souls peace in faith. Without appearing physically to us, He gives us what we need in order to believe and what we ourselves need. And as He did with Thomas, Jesus seeks us out .. just as here He seeks to comfort you and me.
SOME REFLECTION QUESTIONS
1. Think back to the first time you were told that Jesus had risen from the dead. How old were you? .. What was your reaction? Did you find that information easy to believe or terribly difficult? Ask Why?
2. Thomas had seen miracles; he’d witnessed many demonstrations of Jesus’ supernatural power. Yet the crucifixion shook his faith badly. What has shaken your faith to the core? .. even though you may previously have seen numerous works of God? What can you learn from Thomas’s experience?
3. In order to believe, Thomas needed something tangible ..something special for him. The vast majority of Christians have never seen the resurrected Jesus, yet God gives us what we each need in order to believe. What do you need for faith to become real? How has Jesus revealed Himself to you? … are you seeking to know the truth?