Concerns range from, “Please put that up before it breaks,” to “Your behavior will destroy our family if you don’t stop,” to “These policies are demolishing our nation.” You helplessly watch the consequences you predicted roll down.
Jesus’s disciple Thomas surely felt this frustration when the soldiers hauled Jesus off the night of His betrayal. Hadn’t Thomas warned them that returning to Jerusalem would mean death (Jn. 11:16)?
Thomas had been right. Trouble lay ahead for Jesus in Jerusalem. But Jesus hadn’t listened. And Thomas had to watch the worst happen. If only Jesus had heeded his warning.
I bet you remember times when someone didn’t take your concerns seriously. You both suffered the consequences. My unheeded warnings have resulted in a broken mirror, a car wreck, and someone entering a marriage that hurt many. How do we count it all joy (James 1:2) when these trials could have been avoided, if only someone had listened?
Thomas Refused to Hope
Thomas refused to believe anything good could come out of something as bad as what he’d seen happen to Jesus, especially since it could have been avoided.
When the resurrected Jesus visited the disciples, Thomas was not with them. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!”
I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side’ (Jn. 20:25 NLT).
Jesus had predicted His death and resurrection many times, but the disciples couldn’t grasp it. From earth’s viewpoint, betrayal and crucifixion couldn’t produce anything good.
Understanding Thomas’s doubts, Jesus addressed them.
“Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. ‘Peace be with you,’ he said. 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!’” (Jn. 20:26-27 NLT).
Hope Found Thomas
What promises have you doubted? When what we feared happens and we can’t see how any good can come from it, do we dare believe God’s promise “that in all things God works for the good of those who love him” (Rom. 8:28 NIV)?When what we feared happens and we can't see how any good can come from it, do we dare believe God’s promise “that in all things God works for the good of those who love him” (Rom. 8:28)? #hope, #Jesus Click To Tweet
Thomas saw Jesus, and his faith returned.
‘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’” (Jn. 20:28-29 NLT).
Christian artist TobyMac discussed the loss of his twenty-one-year-old son in a YouTube interview. He said he believes if he could visit heaven and see his son, his son would say, “Dad, if you could only see what I see.”
“And it’s not necessarily what heaven looks like. It’s how this thing all works. It’s like how… leaving this life early isn’t necessarily a rip-off. Like it’s ‘no, you don’t understand yet, Dad. You don’t get it. You don’t get it at all.’”
Every day we choose between faith and doubt. We can choose to believe God’s promises and experience comfort and hope. Or like Thomas, before Jesus found him, we can trust our eyes and live in fear and disappointment.
Jesus found Thomas in his doubts. He won’t ever leave or forsake you either. Stop doubting and believe.