Is Doubting a Sin?
Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in My side. Do not be faithless any longer. Believe!” –John 20:27 NLTCE
What is your state of mind eight days after The Resurrection?
Were you to do a random survey, in churches in India and abroad, chances are you will discover that the most preached sermon would be on John 20:19-31. (The event that took place eight days after The Resurrection.) The passage, which got Apostle Thomas permanently, labeled a “doubter” by scores of history books, sermons, grammar books-idiom section, cartoons, and theological expositions! (Idle thought: why don’t we call Peter “denying Peter”?
Does doubting display lack of faith – should we view Thomas as lesser than the other Apostles, for on two occasions, seeking clarification before accepting in ‘blind faith’? Is blind faith stronger than doubting faith?
On the first occasion, in during those incomparably intimate moments in John 14:3-4 when Jesus is trying to remove fear about His imminent departure with His reassurance – “When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going” – Thomas said a little bluntly – “No, we don’t know Lord. We have no idea where you are going so how can we know the way?”
On the second occasion, John 19:23-27 narrates how Thomas was not with the others during the first visit by the Resurrected Jesus, so he said he would not believe until he’d seen with his own eyes. Eight days after Resurrection Day, Jesus reappeared when Thomas was with the disciples, and told him to see for himself the nail wounds, and to believe.
You could dub Thomas a doubter if that is where the narrative (in both cases) ended. However, it went on, and that is the central theme of today’s meditation:
* In John 14, after Thomas sought his clarification, Jesus responded, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one can come to The Father except through me.”
* In John 20, verse 28, after seeing with his own eyes the evidence of Jesus’ Resurrection, Thomas exclaimed, “My Lord and my God!”
Read them again: “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one can come to The Father except through me.” And “My Lord and my God!” The synopsis of the Gospel in two small capsules. The first is the theological basis of the Christian faith, the second the most beautiful sentence in the Bible, which is reiterated in most songs of worship.
These were sentences provoked by doubt!
So go ahead and doubt all you want, seeking Christian, but do your doubting with the Lord, the Bible, or with other believers. Because that is when your ‘doubting faith’ will turn into impenetrable, solid faith that will help you to respond to others, as well as guide your steps into eternity.
- by The NLTCE News Network