Do Not Doubt But Believe

The Doubting Thomas, Carl Heinrich Bloch 1882

Thomas, Doubting Thomas. Forever remembered in the Gospel of John as the disciple who refused to believe that his teacher Jesus had risen from the dead.

Why? Simple: the dead do not come back to life. Everyone dies and they are gone forever. Things break and they don’t come back together again.    

No, he would need hard evidence. He would need to examine the wounds of this so-called Jesus. Then he could know whether his body was truly the same one—that body the Roman governor had nailed to a wooden cross and slaughtered, the body of his friend and master that had hung there limp, cold, and breathless as the Roman soldier penetrated it with the razor blade of his spear.

I would wager that you share Thomas’s doubt also.

This is a world where people die and they stay dead. They’re not coming back.

This is a world where you are stuck with your mistakes and regrets.

This is a world where your body is just broken and nothing is going to fix it.

This is a world where the innocent are abused and killed and no one will save or avenge them.

This is a world where the bad guys often win and the good guys lose.

With Jesus, the bad guys had won. They had brutally murdered Thomas’s friend and teacher, and he was never going to get him back, never going to hear his voice again.

But Thomas would indeed hear the voice of that friend again—now—as Jesus stood before him.

Thomas, see my hands? Feel these scars where the nails held them to the cross.

See my side? Feel where the Roman soldier drove the spear through me.

Do not doubt, Thomas. Believe.

Believe that God gives life to the dead again.

Believe that God puts broken things back together.

Believe that God will redeem your mistakes and regrets.

Believe that everyone who hurts the innocent will be held accountable and that the oppressed will have a redeemer.

Believe that good will win in the end.

Do not doubt, Thomas. Believe.

John tells us in his Gospel that Christ’s flesh was given for the life of the world. This is what the scars on Jesus’s body meant to Thomas. The life that God gave to Jesus’s mutilated, dead flesh will flow outwards to this broken and dying world and make it alive again.

At the sight of this flesh that gives life to the world, Doubting Thomas believed. In the body of his friend Jesus, standing in front of him, was God giving life to the world.

So maybe you do share the doubts of Thomas. Will you share his belief too? Will you believe that Jesus is the life of the world?  

Author: Tyler F Nunley

My thoughts on God, the world, and the Bible

One thought on “Do Not Doubt But Believe”

  1. The story of Thomas is so easy to relate to. I often imagine what I would do if I saw Jesus walk into the room after he had been dead for days. Would my first response be “Oh awesome! Jesus is back! He did what he said he’d do!” Or, would it be more along the lines of Thomas’s experience? It’s convicting every time I hear this story because I should default to “Jesus did what he said he’d do” in my daily life. And if I really believed that at my core, how much stress would I avoid! Thanks for sharing.


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