Google+ 04/05/13 Believing is Not Seeing!

John 20:27-29

 

Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands.

Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

 “My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.

Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me.

Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.” 

 

Most of us have heard or read the story of "Doubting Thomas."  We all know that when Jesus appeared to the disciples the first time, Thomas was not present.  The thing I don't understand is why all the commentaries and stories that have been written about our Scripture today don't explore this fact, as it is the central theme of Jesus's response to Thomas.  Where was he?   He wasn't at Starbucks having coffee.   He wasn't at the mall picking up a last-minute birthday gift for a co-worker.  Apparently, he wasn't sitting alone praying either!  One of the things I preach most often to people is the need and zeal we all need to have for just "showing up."  As we have explored on numerous occasions in our time together, great things seem to happen for God when we show up.  While what we do when we show up is vitally important, it is the act of "showing up" that causes all things to be possible. Do you remember the Garden of Eden?  Eve committed her first sin by herself.  Where was Adam?  Like Thomas, where Adam was is not as important as where they weren't.  If you don't believe how critical this fact is, listen to the response of Jesus to Thomas.  Jesus lets Thomas play "show and tell" with His hands and side.  Jesus plays along and then tells Thomas to not be faithless anymore.  Then Jesus delivers the telling line about the character of Thomas.  Jesus tells him that he has believed because Thomas has seen.  Jesus exclaims, "Blessed are those who believe without seeing me."  Does Thomas understand that in this case, the blessing of Jesus has not fallen on him?  I don't think so.  Remember what God did in the Garden of Eden after Eve sinned?  God called for Adam and asked him where he was.  If you continue to read on in our Scripture today, you will find that verse 31 explains this dramatic scene between Jesus and Thomas.  John tells us in verse 31 that all of this is written so that we might believe without seeing.  Today, God is telling us to "show up."  Don't be somewhere else.  Your presence is vital to the work of Jesus Christ.  Finally, the Bible calls it faith for a reason, as almost always, believing is not seeing!