Thomas, the Doer
For reading & meditation - Acts 1:6-14
"... you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses ... to the ends of the earth." (v. 8)
Recognize that if you could not doubt, you could not believe. So don't be threatened or intimidated by your doubts. Robert Browning put it like this: "You call for faith
: I show you doubt, to prove that faith exists. The more of doubt, the stronger faith, I say, if faith o'ercomes doubt." Those who doubt most, and yet strive to overcome their doubts, turn out to be some of Christ's strongest disciples. One commentator points out that Thomas, being a twin, must have developed an early independence of judgment that made it possible for him to break with his brother and become a follower of Jesus. This is an assumption, of course, but I think it is a valid one. It was that independence, perhaps, that led him to reject the testimony of the other disciples when they said, "We have seen the Lord." Jesus did not reject Thomas because of his doubts, but said to him: "Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe" (John 20:27). Suddenly his doubts vanished, and he was transformed in that moment into one of Christ's most committed disciples. Up until then, no one had called Jesus "God " They had called Him, "Messiah," "Son of God," "Son of the Living God" - but not "God." Here Thomas the doubter leaped beyond the others, and became the strongest believer of them all. And this faith of Thomas?s did not stop at faith - it resulted in mighty achievement. The doubter became a doer. And how!
Prayer: O God, what a prospect - my faith, at first so tentative, can, through Your illumination and my response, become a driving force. It can not only save me, but send me. May there be no limits! Amen.
For Further Study
1. Where does faith come from?
2. What did Jesus say to the centurion?