“On the evening of that first day of the week, when the doors were locked, where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.”
When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.”
Thomas, called Didymus, one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.
So the other disciples said to him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them,
“Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands and put my finger into the nailmarks and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
Now a week later his disciples were again inside and Thomas was with them.
Jesus came, although the doors were locked, and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands, and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving, but believe.” Thomas answered and said to him, “My Lord and my God!”Jesus said to him, “Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.”
Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples that are not written in this book. But these are written that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that through this belief you may have life in his name ” – John 20-19-31
This was the gospel reading on April 8th. Whenever we talk about Thomas the apostle, many names come to mind, such as, doubting Thomas, ye of little faith.
However, the priest that celebrated mass on that faithful day, gave a refreshing insight on how Thomas was not in doubt, but was being pragmatic in living out the teaching of Christ, our Lord.
It starts of with the verse as seen in John 14:6, “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” But you may ask, how does Jesus’ revelation of Himself show Thomas’ pragmatic approach to living the gospel?
It can be seen in the previous verses in John 14:1-5, “Jesus said to him, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also. And you know the way to the place where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” The priest offered an interesting point of view, in which it puts us in the shoes of the apostles, when Jesus said that He has prepares a place for us, and will come again to take us there personally, we can assume many of the apostles would not understand what he meant by taking us there personally. A simple act of bravery by Thomas that is often overlooked, is that he spoke up and ask specifically what is the way to the place where the Lord has prepared for us. and this leads to probably the most famous verse in all of the bible. To which Jesus never hesitated to tell us the Way, which through Himself.
Another point that shows that Thomas had shown such outward belief in the gospel, not just being able to put his finger into the side of the Lord, but when the Risen Christ did appear his apostles again, he went to Thomas straight, and he exclaimed, “My Lord and my God!” – John 20:28. The only apostle then to not just see Jesus as his master, but also his God.
Talking about this, Thomas did not seem so doubting afterall!