“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 fingers here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound into 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.”” John 20:26-29, NLT
2nd Sunday (Post-Resurrection) - “He Is Alive!”
The Post- Resurrection narrative about the experience of Thomas and his reluctance to initially accept the existence of the Risen Lord, is so emblematic of the skeptical world we live in today. The Gospel of John was the last of the gospels to be written, and in many ways, we see John’s attempt to reach a disbelieving world. Thomas’ first sign of skepticism emerges in John 11:16, when he accompanies Jesus and the other disciples to Bethany, where Jesus ostensibly raises Lazarus from the dead. Thomas vocalized his fear and doubts that Jesus would not leave Bethany alive. Later, in John 14:5, Thomas refutes Jesus who reminds the disciples that He would be sacrificing His life on their behalf, and He would atone for the sins of all humankind. Thomas told Jesus, “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?” We fast-forward eight days after the Resurrection, where Thomas has joined the other disciples after a mysterious absence. On the evening of the Resurrection of Jesus, He appeared before the other disciples. They saw Jesus, and He gave them a blessing of assurance, that all would be well. The absence of Thomas only intensified his doubts. When Jesus returned again, Thomas was present. Jesus never chided Thomas for His absence, but He invited Thomas to test his skepticism. It was in that dimly lit room on a Sunday evening, that Thomas saw the light of truth. Thomas abandoned his doubts, and embraced a new belief. Jesus was alive, and He had now taken residence in the heart of a struggling disciple. He is alive!