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Seeing is believing?

October 1, 2016

“When they saw him, they worshipped him; but some doubted.”‭‭Matthew‬ ‭28:17‬ ‭NIVUK‬‬

Today in church someone read what is known as the Great Commission from Matthew 28, where Jesus tells his disciples to go and make more disciples for him.

One verse in that passage struck me again as being odd.

But I think significant.

Verse 17.

Many of us know of Jesus’ disciple Thomas. 

Unfairly branded “Doubting Thomas”.

Totally unfair.

You see Thomas had a problem. The other disciples had all met Jesus after his resurrection. Thomas was double booked that night.

And he didn’t believe them when they told him that Jesus was alive again.

But this verse.


The disciples all sat before Jesus. They saw him with their own eyes. They heard him with their own ears.

But even then as they worshipped.

Some doubted.

How could they? We would say “if only we had been there, if only we could know”.

But kneeling before Jesus some still doubted.

I don’t know why this was the case, but this underlines something for me yet again.

If people who had met Jesus face to face, had followed him, shared his life, seen his death and been eye witnesses of his risen body still doubted, then isn’t it understandable that you and I have doubts? Even just sometimes?

Doubt is not a sin.

Doubt is not the opposite of faith.

It is the other side of the coin.

It is part of authentic faith.

Real faith struggles with the issues unashamedly.

Something changed, for we are told those disciples did believe. And they followed Jesus and in many cases gave their lives literally for him.

What changed for them? I don’t know.

But I know what changed for Thomas. He didn’t give into his doubts.

He wanted to see for himself and Jesus answered his prayer.

A second audience with the disciples largely for Thomas’s benefit. And true to his word, he believed.

So what do we do with doubt? Do we try to ignore it?

I think we acknowledge it. Struggle with it. Share with others.

But don’t give into it. Keep holding on.

For that promise keeps encouraging us to keep on –  “blessed are those who have not seen. And yet believe”.


From → Christianity

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