JOHN 20:27-29: “Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.” 28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (ESV)
OBSERVATION: I am the first to admit – I am a bit like Thomas. I think Thomas gets a bad rap in the Scriptures. The nickname “Doubting Thomas” has dogged him since the writing of the Gospel of John. Yet, truth be told, Thomas was just the only one willing to say what the others had thought and felt. He wasn’t ready to go down some wild path of fancy. He had seen Jesus die. He wanted proof, hard proof. He wanted to see Jesus, to touch Jesus – then he would believe.
One important element of this encounter that is often left out is that this was before Thomas had been filled with the Holy Spirit. He was still dealing with only what he could discern with his physical senses. Yet, the wonder of this account is that – Jesus met Thomas at the point of his need. He did not ignore Thomas, He did not rebuke Thomas. Jesus said – “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.”
The Scripture does not tell us if Thomas did this. I think the invitation was enough for Thomas. When Jesus showed Him His hands Thomas cried out – “My Lord and my God!” Thomas believed. He believed, not because He touched Jesus’ wounds, but because Jesus revealed Himself to Thomas – at the point of his need. Then Jesus exhorted Thomas to greater faith as He said – “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
Today the call of the Gospel is to believe in someone that we have not seen. Yet, even though we have not seen Jesus, He still meets us at the point of our need. Jesus still reveals Himself to humble, seeking hearts! He reveals Himself through the witness of the Holy Spirit in our hearts. When the Holy Spirit reveals Jesus in our hearts, through the proclamation of God’s Word, like Thomas – we have no need of touching His hands or His side – for we have touched His heart. WE BELIEVE!
This morning is Resurrection Sunday! The tomb is empty! Sin, death, and the devil have been defeated! Forgiveness, pardon, freedom, hope, joy, love, and peace are ours through Jesus Christ! He has not only risen from an earthly tomb – He has risen in our hearts. Jesus is alive. He sits at the right hand of the Father until all things are put under His feet – and then He will return in power and glory. This is not an idle tale as some would suppose. This is the unchanging reality of God’s Word! And it is all possible because HE IS RISEN!
Lord, thank you for defeating the power of sin and death in my life. Arise anew in my heart this morning and draw me to the Father, through the Holy Spirit, in humble surrender and joyful praise and adoration. When someone proclaims – HE IS RISEN!, – may I resound in full assurance of faith – HE IS RISEN INDEED! In Jesus Name!