Text: John 20: 26-31
Text verse: John 20:27
As a result of this incident, someone who struggles to believe is often referred to as the “doubting Thomas”. However, we should not be blinded by doubt. The beauty of this passage is precisely that Thomas’ doubt turned to faith.
John makes it clear again in verse 31 why he recorded this gospel: So that we can believe.
That is why he also presents Thomas to us. It is an important part of the gospel because we are shown in it that the disciples are not forced to believe. Jesus convinced them with visible evidence. Furthermore, they were not naive to just believe anything that was presented to them. In the gospel, we deal with eyewitnesses who accurately reflect what they saw and heard.
This testimony is important because we know how it is often difficult for us to believe. It is difficult for us because, like Thomas, we also want to witness first-hand before we are willing to believe.
Then we also rightly feel guilty about our petty beliefs. Let’s see how Jesus helps Thomas and at the same time helps us to believe.
He is faithful
This passage makes it clear that Jesus knew that Thomas had told the other disciples that he would only believe if he himself could touch Jesus’ wounds. Although Thomas doubted in a moment of weakness, Jesus was still faithful. That is why Paul writes: “… if we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself.” (2 Tim. 2:13)
Christ’s grace is so great that our doubt does not change His love for us.
He gives us the evidence
Furthermore, Jesus also shows understanding for Thomas’ doubts by showing him His marks and giving him the opportunity to touch with his finger and hand. Thus, Jesus helps him to dispel doubt from his heart but with the reprimand: “Do not doubt any longer ...” (v. 27).
The Word is given to us with clear evidence. Everything that convinced the disciples was also recorded for us in this gospel and therefore we have no reason to doubt any longer. We must also see Jesus with our spiritual eye and ban the doubt from our hearts. Everything we need to believe is recorded in this gospel.
We are not worse off
When Jesus says in verse 29 that those who have not seen and yet believe are happy, then it may sound as if those who have not had the opportunity to see, are worse off.
This is not the case at all, because those who have not had the opportunity to see, will have the opportunity to hear preaching (Rom. 10:17). On top of that, the Holy Spirit also comes to live in our hearts, which will further convince us of the truth through the Word. This is why we are happy and blessed (also see 14:26).
Do not let doubt trap you. Fill your mind with this glorious gospel and you will see your faith strengthened day by day.