The disciples are still hurting over the crucifixion. Jesus has risen from the dead but now they have to deal with themselves. They had scattered like flies when it came down to Jesus’ arrest. Peter had denied the Lord three times with-in eye shot of the Lord. Now that Jesus was alive, how could he deal with the pain of his failure? Thomas has refused to believed the witness of others that Jesus had actually risen from the dead.
Thomas is a picture of the believer who has fallen into unbelief because of what he saw and experienced. Things had not worked out like he perceived them. Jesus wasn’t suppose to die. He was supposed to become a king, overthrow Rome, and put it to the religious leaders who had so opposed them. Instead, Jesus was arrested, convicted, beaten, and crucified by them.
You may be reading this as one who has experienced the same. Some situation did not turn out as you thought. Where was God? Where were the people of God when all this came down? So, you have now turned your back on the Lord, wondering if anything you once believed is true.
It’s interesting that Thomas was not around when Jesus first appeared alive again to the disciples. He had to hear “second-hand” that Jesus had arisen. Could it have been that Thomas was so hurt, so confused, so angry that he separated himself from the very ones who could have helped him get through?
Thomas simply could not believe the testimony of others. So I suppose in most people’s eyes he was “finished”. But not in the Lord’s. When the words of man could not heal him up, the presence of Jesus did. The presence of the Lord can and will heal you up as well.
The difference in religion and relationship is called “fellowship”. Sadly, we have reduced this to meaning a church social or “chicken dinner” with the saints. Yet, fellowship with the Lord means far more. Fellowship with the Lord means I will have someone who will come find me when I get lost. Someone who will come seeking me, knocking on my heart’s door, desiring to fellowship with me…even in my hurt and season of apparent unbelief.
…There is much more to learn in the message, “The Healing Presence of Jesus”. You may find and listen to it or download it for free at RiverChurchRoanoke.com. Then click media. God is not finished with you and the healer of your hurts may be much closer than you realize!