Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin,
was not with them when Jesus came.
So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.”
But he said to them,
“Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails,
and place my finger into the mark of the nails,
and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.
Eight days later, his disciples were inside again,
and Thomas was with them,
Although the doors were locked,
Jesus came and stood among them and said,
“Peace be with you.”
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.”
Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus said to him,
“Have you believed because you have seen me?
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
John 20:24-29 ESV
We have looked at those who have scars that are there to remind us; they are there as markers; they remind us of hard, negative things that may not have even been processed very well and continue to bring pain; and now, the One Scar that brings us life and forgiveness and is almost a symbol as we remember it. That is the scar, or group of scars from Christ’s death: the scars in His hands and feet as well as the scar in His side where He was stabbed.
Once Thomas saw the scars, He believed. He later needed that belief to withstand probable martyrdom.
This is the story told us in the above passage. We often criticize Thomas for wanting to see those scars since he wasn’t present when the apostles first saw Jesus alive. But when he had the opportunity, it’s not clear whether he actually did. There is no indication that Jesus thought less of him for wanting to see the evidence of the nails and piercing in his side. I love that about Jesus! He wasn’t nearly as judgmental and critical as we can be of others who are simply human and need to see evidence. It is fine for us to see it if it is available.
Instead, Jesus’ response to Thomas was, “Go ahead. Put your finger in the scars in my hands. Touch that scar in my side. Check out all the physical evidence while I’m here.” He knew the day was coming when Thomas was going to be putting his life on the line for the message He was carrying to other places in the world. Thomas needed to know, without a shadow of doubt that the message was true!
How does that translate to today?
I think one way it translates is that He wants us to ask Him our hard questions; to try out what His Word says; to put it into practice.
Don’t just acquiece mentally to the truth of the gospel. Put it into practice. Step into the water like Peter did. See what the Christian life is all about. What is the purpose of those scars? Why did Jesus have to die for you? Trust the work He did. He fully forgave all your sin. He made you into a new person in Christ. You are no longer under condemnation.Don’t just acquiece mentally to the truth of the gospel. Put it into practice. Step into the water like Peter did. See what the Christian life is all about. Click To Tweet
It’s important for us to think about it. Then, like Thomas, we can attest to the diety of Christ. When he actully saw Jesus, his response was, “My Lord and my GOD!” This was a clear assertion that he realized Jesus was the Christ or the Messiah they had all been waiting for. His doubting was, no longer.In the years ahead, Thomas went to India as a missionary. Eventually, he was martyred there. We want the kind of faith in Jesus that is absolutely certain. If martyrdom is in the mix, we want to know what and why we believe...so did they! Click To Tweet
In the years ahead, Thomas went to India as a missionary. Eventually, he was killed there for serving his GOD. We want the kind of faith in Jesus that is absolutely certain that what He said about Himself is true. We don’t want to have any doubts. If martyrdom is in the mix, we want to know what and why we believe…so did they!
Call to action: Do you have hard question about your faith? Are there places you struggle to believe? Write them down. Ask GOD to show you the truth about them. Talk to your pastor and ask for places you can do further reading and study on these topics. Talk to Bible study teachers you have who may be able to give you wisdom regarding further reading or may be able to give you insight on this topics where you struggle. Keep praying that GOD will give you wisdom and insight into His Word. It is usually wise to work on one at a time.