April 10, 2023

Doubting With Thomas

Devotion for the Week...

I hope you had a wonderful Easter! Ours was quiet, but we like quiet, so it was good 😊

I've been thinking a lot about Thomas as we got closer to Easter. I was thinking specifically about how Jesus didn't condemn him for saying, "I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side" (John 20:25). This, of course, was after the Resurrection, and after Jesus had appeared to the disciples. Thomas hadn't been there that night and when the others told him that Jesus came to visit them, he couldn't believe it.

We often give Thomas a hard time, giving him the nickname Doubting Thomas, and making it seem like he was crazy to not believe the others. But think about it for a minute; if someone you loved died, and then a few days later people told you they saw that person alive, would you believe it? Of course not! Thomas was being perfectly reasonable.

Sure, Jesus was no ordinary person and He had told the disciples, "The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of his enemies. He will be killed, but three days later he will rise from the dead" (Mark 9:31), but none of them understood. None of them were sitting around on what we call Resurrection Sunday, waiting with joyful anticipation to hear about Jesus rising again. They were all deep in mourning, scared of the Jewish leaders and completely confused about what to do next. Just like we would have been in their place.

When Thomas heard from the others that Jesus had appeared to them, he was probably hopeful. He probably desperately wanted it to be true, but he couldn't just believe something that sounded so crazy, no matter how much he wanted it.

And then, eight days later, he was there in the room when Jesus appeared again. Jesus didn't chastise him for not believing the others and He didn't say He was disappointed by Thomas' lack of faith. He just held out His hands and said, "Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side" (John 20:27). Instead of condemnation or disappointment, Jesus gave Thomas reassurance and proof that He was real.

In fact, if we back up a few verses to when He first appeared to the disciples, the night Thomas wasn't there, Jesus offered them the same proof! "As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side" (v. 20). Jesus knew this story of Him being alive again would be hard to believe. He knew people would doubt the disciples were telling the truth. He knew even those who saw Him with their own eyes would be confused and maybe tempted to think it was a trick. So He showed them the best proof He had - His scars.
We never need to hide our doubts | DevotedQuilter.com
God isn't frustrated or disappointed in us when we doubt. He knows we'll have trouble believing sometimes. He knows the hard times in our lives will make us doubt His love and that waiting a long time for an answer to prayer will make us doubt that He's listening. We never need to hide our doubts or cover them over by pretending a faith we don't feel. He will always meet us where we are.

1 comment:

  1. And Jesus offered His hands to the apostles first, perhaps to avoid having them ask to see the wounds. So some of the others may have had the same doubts had Jesus not showed the wounds to them first. He is risen, Alleluia!


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