Jesus and Thomas: Believe and Be Blessed (again)

(So many people have been clicking on this post from November 2011, I thought I’d repost it. It’s seasonal, anyway.)

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)

“My Lord and my God!”  There it is.  That’s what Christianity is all about.  That is what faith in Jesus is all about.  Jesus is our Lord and our God.  Jesus doesn’t deny Thomas’ proclamation.  In fact, He confirms it.

“Have you believed because you have seen me?  Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believed.”

In fact, if we were to break John’s Gospel into modern literary terms, we could say that the crucifixion is the climax  of his book but “My Lord and my God!” demonstrates the purpose of it all.  This is really what everything is pointing to.

Yes.  The cross is totally necessary for our salvation and so is His resurrection.  But Thomas’ proclamation nails the why.  Because Jesus is our Lord and our God, that any of it matters. Other people die and are resurrected in the Bible as miracles and signs of God’s power and glory.  Others even ascend to heaven.  Only Jesus does it all while paying the ultimate price for all of our sins in the process..

Jesus leads us to our Father and His Father through death and into heaven.  Only Jesus is God in the flesh. Blessed are those who believe.

Because, Jesus is speaking to us, you know.  We are blessed when we believe even though we have not had the chance to see Jesus face to face, to eat with Him, or to touch His wounds with our hands.

And that, John tells us immediately following the passage above, is the purpose of his Gospel.  It was written as a witness to a few of the things Jesus did as He walked among humans like ourselves.  There were no cell phones, video cameras, cell phones with video cameras of ipads back then.  Instead people talked to one another and sometimes wrote things down.  Don’t forget that many of the people who are mentioned in this Gospel and the others were still around to be questioned about the events as recorded.

John intended that his Gospel be takenu at face value. He is essentially telling s here at the end, “This is a little bit of what , personally,I witnessed and experienced as I lived and travelled with Jesus.  I know that Jesus is the Lord and our God.  He entrusted His own mother to my care.  I know what I’m talking about.”

Believe and be blessed.

Christopher

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