Thomasville Times Enterprise

Faith & values

May 3, 2014

He provides an answer to all our troubles

I have always been one who needs to see it to believe it. Prior to my salvation, I approached faith in the same way. I often wondered how Christians could believe in someone they have never physically seen. Jesus sounded like a good guy, but how could we know He really said all of those things or even know He existed? The funny thing is that I had a belief in God, but only as a set of rules, not as a loving Father in Heaven. God, gloriously, delivered me from that mindset and I give Him praise for that. Jesus also had one among Him with the same “see-it-to- believe-it” mentality. Thomas walked with Jesus, saw Him perform miracles and listened to His teaching, yet when they laid Jesus in the tomb, his faith faltered.

John 20:24-25 says, “Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. 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.” Hard to believe these words are coming from one of Jesus’ disciples! How could you be witness to these things and still doubt who He was? But if we are honest, there are times when stresses of this life start to overwhelm us. We feel as Thomas did, that we believe what Jesus said, but it seems as if He is still in the grave and that our prayers are not reaching the ears of God. That is when, as we will see, that Jesus comes and shows us that He is alive and He is real!

John 20:26-27 says, “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!” 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.” Notice, Jesus didn’t appear immediately after Thomas made such a bold statement of his unbelief. Jesus let him sit for eight days before appearing to the disciples. Eight days of letting the doubt grow and fester, of letting the sadness and resentment grow inside him. Then, when Thomas was probably at the point of giving up, Jesus comes. The Bible says He walked through the closed doors, perhaps in a way representing the closed mind of Thomas. He greets the disciples and then zeroes in on Thomas.

I can only imagine that moment when Thomas’ and Jesus’ eyes met. I can see the tears start to well up in Thomas’ eyes as he see Jesus. All the things he has secretly thought in his mind about Him, all the moments when he cried out for Jesus to show himself.  What an humbling moment for Thomas, in front of all of the disciples, for Jesus to have to present Himself to prove who He was. Almost saying that Thomas’ faith was only built upon what he was able to see, which is like shifting sand. Jesus proved that He was the only thing that Thomas could put his trust in, not appearances, but in Christ alone.

Perhaps you are going through a similar time as Thomas did. Your faith has been shaken to its core and tomorrow seems so far away. Jesus says earlier in John 16:33, “"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." He has overcome our doubt, our fear, and our troubles.

In fact, He has provided an answer to all of our troubles. He did it by doing the exact thing that caused Thomas to doubt; dying on a cross and being buried for our sins. That’s how we can look at any situation and know that He will bring us through it. He is on His throne and will stay there for eternity, He will never leave you or forsake you. What comfort there is knowing that He is who He said He is. Maybe you have never felt that comfort and today is the day! Maybe you are doubting as Thomas did,

He will show Himself if you ask Him to, and when He does, you will say as Thomas did, “My Lord and my God!”

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