John 20: Believing what you can’t see

December 27th, 2006

Many people are like Thomas in today’s reading, and they claim that they are not prepared to believe anything until they have seen it with their own eyes. You can say that you are not going to believe anything until you see certain proof, but that option is not available to you. What you are in fact choosing to do is to live your life as if the claims of Jesus are not true. You may think you are sitting on the fence, but if you are living as if Jesus was not God and there are no eternal consequences of your actions in life, then you are in fact choosing to believe in the non-existence of the Christian God.

John’s Account of the Good News — Chapter 20

20:1 On the first day of the week Mary Magdalene went early, while it was still dark, to the tomb, and saw the stone taken away from the tomb. 20:2 So she ran to Simon Peter and the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken away the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him.”

20:3 Peter and the other disciple went off towards the tomb. 20:4 They both ran, and the other disciple outran Peter, arriving at the tomb first. 20:5 He bent down and looked in, seeing the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. 20:6 Simon Peter arrived after him and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there 20:7 and the cloth that had covered Jesus’s head, not lying with the linen cloths, but rolled up in a place by itself. 20:8 Then the other disciple who had arrived first at the tomb also went in, and he saw and believed. 20:9 They had not yet understood the prediction of Scripture that he would rise from the dead. 20:10 So the disciples went away again to their own homes.

20:11 Mary was standing outside at the tomb weeping. As she wept, she bent down and looked into the tomb, 20:12 and she saw two angels in white sitting, one at the head, and one at the feet, where the body of Jesus had been. 20:13 They asked her, “Why are you weeping?” She said, “Because they have taken away my Lord, and I don’t know where they have put him.” 20:14 When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but did not recognise that it was Jesus.

20:15 Jesus said, “Why are you weeping? Who are you looking for?” She thought he was the gardener, and said, “Sir, if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.” 20:16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said, “Rabboni!” which means, “Teacher!” 20:17 Jesus said to her, “Don’t touch me. I haven’t yet ascended to my Father. Go to my friends, and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'”

20:18 Mary Magdalene came to tell the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had said these things to her. 20:19 When evening came on that day, the first day of the week, the disciples were meeting with the doors locked, because they were afraid of the Jews. Jesus came and stood amongst them and said, “Peace be to you.”

20:20 After saying this he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. 20:21 Jesus again said, “Peace be to you. In the same way that the Father sent me, I am sending you.” 20:22 When he had said this, he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit! 20:23 Anyone’s sins you that forgive are forgiven. Anyone’s sins you don’t forgive have not been forgiven.”

20:24 Thomas, also called Didymus, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. 20:25 The other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said, “Unless I see the marks of the nails on his hands, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

20:26 Eight days later the disciples were meeting again and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood amongst them and said, “Peace be to you.” 20:27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Put your hand here, and place it into my side. Stop doubting. Believe.” 20:28 Thomas answered, “My Lord and my God!” 20:29 Jesus said, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without having seen.”

20:30 Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, apart from the ones written in this book. 20:31 But these are written so that you can believe Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you can have life in his name.

Entry Filed under: Trust

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. » Tak&hellip  |  July 25th, 2009 at 8:23 am

    […] chapter 20 of John’s account of the good news, Thomas is quoted as saying, “Unless I see the marks of the nails on his hands, […]

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