One of the most human stories of the Bible, is the reaction of Thomas on hearing of the resurrection. John 20 reads:
24 Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord!’But he said to them, ‘Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.’ 26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’ 27 Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.’ 28 Thomas said to him, ‘My Lord and my God!’ 29 Then Jesus told him, ‘Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’
Hear we have a man who has followed Jesus for three years, who has put all of his hopes in Him, and now in his very human understanding – sees those hopes dashed by the crucifixion. He returns to the disciples’ hiding place (yes, hiding place), to be told by his fellows that Jesus has returned. You can almost hear him saying to them “Not funny guys.” When they persist with the good news, he actually becomes annoyed, and makes a bold statement – “I need to see it for myself, and in fact I need to touch Him to see if it is real.”
How like today’s world is that! “There can’t be a God, I’ve never seen Him.” And, that is the position Thomas puts himself in.
But then, Jesus makes His presence known. And Thomas’ defiant spirit crumbles. He no longer insists on touching, he has seen, and spiritually felt Jesus’ presence. “My Lord and my God he exclaims. Doubt has died away, with the proof of true life!
That is the promise to us today. “‘Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’”
May we all feel that presence in our lives today.