But Thomas, one of the twelve, who was called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples were saying to him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the imprint of the nails, and put my finger into the place of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.”
It was Easter Sunday evening. Jesus had already appeared to the other disciples, but Thomas wasn’t with them at the time. So, after Jesus had entered that locked upper room, revealing His resurrected body to them, they told Thomas everything that had happened. They had been in such grief, but after seeing Jesus they were renewed with hope. They wanted Thomas to have hope again too. Yet, when he heard they had seen Jesus alive, Thomas couldn’t believe. He would have to see the evidence—to see and touch Jesus himself.
Thomas has gotten a bad rap. He has been known throughout church history as the disciple who doubted—as if the other disciples never had their moments. In fact, when the women ran to tell the disciples that Jesus was not dead but had risen, the disciples didn’t believe them. They had to run and see for themselves. They too needed to lay their eyes on the evidence of what the women had reported. This is probably what any of us would do. The news seemed impossible, and they could not wrap their minds around it. This is a reminder that we all have or will at some point experience doubt. But doubt does not have to destroy our faith. In fact, uncertainty actually leaves room for faith.
Doubt can often arise when our perspective changes. We still believe the same things to be true, but our circumstances have changed our field of vision. We experienced unexpected loss. Plans changed. Someone left. Healing came too slowly. So, what changed for Thomas that caused him to question? Jesus died. The Man he had given his life to follow for the last three years was executed. And at this moment, he was struggling to believe what he heard.
- What are some doubts you have had in the past or doubts you are currently wrestling with about your own faith?
- How have you have asked God to prove Himself to you? Like Thomas, have you asked God for evidence of something you couldn’t understand?
- Take some time in prayer to be honest with the Lord about any of the ways you doubt Him—His character, His action, or His ability to move in your life. Whatever doubts you do have, the Lord wants you to trust Him with them.