Some nicknames are fun ones for people such as Magic Johnson, Air Jordan etc. Some celebrities are known by their first or last name such as Bono of U-2. Some people are called by nicknames they really don’t like but the nicknames seem to stick. One of Jesus’ followers has been known by a one time flaw for centuries. Thomas was a follower of Jesus who had some doubts regarding the resurrection of Jesus. Because of Thomas having doubts we have the phrase Doubting Thomas which no one wants to be called.
Thomas had heard from the other disciples that they had seen Jesus after His resurrection, but Thomas did not believe them. He told the other disciples, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.” It is easy for us who are living 2,000 years later and have the benefit of reading the story to perhaps be critical of Thomas and his doubts, but lets put ourselves in his place. Thomas saw Jesus get arrested and knew Jesus had died. Thomas knew Jesus had been buried in a tomb with a huge stone rolled in front of it to close it. It had been an immensely emotional ordeal for all of the followers of Jesus and Thomas experienced it all first hand and now the other followers are claiming to have seen Jesus. How many of us would have had doubts too?
Jesus appeared to the disciples in dramatic fashion to perhaps get Thomas’s attention. We see in John 20 “And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” 27 Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” Thomas had the proof he needed to respond in faith by proclaiming “My Lord my God!” Jesus replied, “because you have seen you believe. Blessed are those who believe and have not seen.”
How often do we face difficult times and faith seems far from us? How often do we doubt the goodness of God when we go through a hardship? We can stop and reflect on the fact that Jesus took on our biggest problem by defeating death and take encouragement from His resurrection.