John 20:24-25 says, “But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.” What happened to Thomas? Why was he so doubtful, that even the eye witness testimonies of his fellow disciples didn’t cause him to believe? He had been a faithful member of this band of brothers for three years. Why did he not believe them? Let’s get into God’s Word and find out.
First off, let’s look at the name “Didymus”. This Greek word meant “twin” or “double“. Because of this, some scholars have supposed that Thomas had a twin brother or sister. That is certainly possible, and I would not argue it. However, by Thomas’s actions, we could suppose that his name “double” might point to his double mindedness. James 1:8 says that a double minded man is unstable in all of his ways. This describes Thomas.
When Thomas could physically see and touch Jesus, he was ready to die for Him. We see this in John 11:7-8, & 16. All of the disciples of Jesus tried to talk Him out of going to Judaea, but Thomas told them, “Let us also go, that we may die with Him”. This shows the love and commitment he had for Jesus. However, it was flawed. Like many of us, his commitment was not based on the spirit, but on the natural.
Our commitment to Jesus Christ must be on a spiritual level. It must believe, even when it has not seen. That is Bible faith. Faith that a chair will hold you up in church is not true faith. It is natural faith. You see that it looks sturdy. You feel it and lean on it. Anybody - saved or not - has this kind of faith. However, true faith - or spiritual faith - does not have to have any physical senses confirm what it believes. It believes because it’s based on God’s Word. The world says seeing is believing, but God says believing is seeing. We will start having more answers to our prayers, when we believe we receive when we pray - not after we get it. In fact, you usually won’t get it. Faith believes first, then it receives. If your waiting to rejoice in your answered prayer until you get the answer, it’s likely you won’t get the answer. Why? Because you are not truly believing. If you truly believe, you will rejoice when you pray. Read carefully Mark 11:22-24, Matt. 21:22, & Heb 11:1.
Thomas was spiritually dull. He did not perceive the clear teaching of Jesus in John 14:1-5. Jesus had just told him he was going to Heaven, but he did not understand. We must walk by faith, not by sight (2Cor 5:7). I’m not putting down Thomas - I’ve been as bad or worse at times in discerning spiritual things. Yet, we must recognize his flaws and see our own, and then correct them. Thomas did correct his, and went on to be a life-long disciple of Jesus Christ. He repented of his unbelief, and declared to Jesus, “My Lord and my God”.
Jesus received him, but not before rebuking him for his unbelief. Faith pleases God - unbelief does not. Jesus told him he believed because he saw; but He said blessed are those who believe, and have not seen. Do you believe that Jesus Christ is God in the flesh, and that He died on the cross for your sins, and bodily rose from the dead after three days? Then The Bible says your are blessed (supremely, well off, fortunate, happy, highly favored).
Our faith must be in God’s Word, and not in what we discern with our natural senses. Seen things are temporary, unseen things are eternal. Let us not be like Thomas, who needed some physical experience before he would believe. Let’s believe, because God’s Word is eternal truth. Let’s say to Jesus, “My Lord and my God”, without having to see Him in the natural realm. Let’s live by faith, for “The Just shall live by faith” (Rom 1:17). Don’t let your mind be double, for it only brings trouble. Until next time, rejoice in The Lord!