Our lesson begins with the story of Thomas right after he missed seeing Jesus.
John 20:24 Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.” So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.”
Thomas was a show me the proof kind of man. Even though he spent the last three and a half years with the other apostles, he did not believe them based on their testimony. The only way he would believe that Jesus was raised from the dead was if he could examine His body himself. Not only did he want to see His hands and His side, but he also wanted to touch them to make sure the wounds were real.
I can certainly appreciate Thomas’s way of thinking because who doesn’t want proof of something so significant. However, he had all the evidence he needed without seeing Jesus in the flesh. He knew the teachings of Jesus and saw all that He did. So, he was in denial at this point, but Thomas got his wish the next week.
26 And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” 27 Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” 28 And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
Think about this. Thomas had all week to think about Jesus being raised from the dead. No doubt, he had to struggle with all his fellow apostles and others telling him that Jesus was alive. Then the day came when Jesus appeared to him. Jesus knew what Thomas wanted as He invited him to look and touch His hands and side.
Thomas’s said, “My Lord and my God!” Any doubt Thomas had was gone. However, Jesus points out that Thomas’s faith was weak because the only reason he believed was because he saw Jesus with His own eyes, but Jesus said that those who believe in Him without physically seeing Him will be blessed.
The great thing about all of this is that we don’t have to see Jesus with our own eyes, and we don’t have to believe in Him with blind faith because there is ample proof that He is the Son of God as we see in the next verse.
John 20:30 And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.
You can prove that Jesus lived, died, and was raised again from the proof in the Bible, from early Christian writers, and the writings of His enemies.
While some will continue to be like doubting Thomas, who will demand physical proof, these individuals have all the evidence needed to prove that Jesus is the Son of God. I am thankful that we don’t have to believe in what the Bible says blindly, and I think God did that on purpose because He knows we like to investigate and prove things. So, I hope we never become like Thomas and refuse to believe in the resurrected Jesus or the message of His Word without physically seeing Jesus because the Word of God and the external evidence prove that He is the Son of God and our Savior.