Pondering John 20:19-31
You can click HERE to read the passage.
2 things that catch my attention from this passage…
1) Three times in a matter of 8 verses Jesus says “Peace be with you!” Sort of makes you think these guys were struggling with experiencing peace with all that was going on. There is still a lot of that going around today. Both believers and unbelievers alike are often overwhelmed by worry and anxiety and have a hard time experiencing the peace of God. The key, I think, to knowing the peace of God in your life is to know the God of peace. God identifies Himself in Judges 6 as Jehovah Shalom. (You can read about this encounter that Gideon had with God by clicking HERE where I blogged about it a few years ago.) Jesus is identified as the Prince of Peace. To know God is to know peace. There used to be a sign that I would see around from time to time that has a lot of truth to it: “No Jesus, No peace; Know Jesus, Know peace.” Whenever I am assaulted by worry I try to remind myself that God is in control, that He is with me, and that I can rest in Him and let Him deal with the troubling details of life.
2) Thomas, I think, kind of gets a bad rap by being referred to as “Doubting Thomas.” I’m pretty sure that if I had not been around when Jesus presented himself the first time to the disciples that I would have had my doubts too. The thing that I appreciate about Thomas is that he did not pretend his doubts did not exist. He owned them and confronted them and when they were allayed he was strengthened in his faith and became a powerful ambassador for the gospel. My concern is that we do not do this in the church. We have our doubts but we just sweep them under the spiritual carpet, act like they are not there, and then try to live out our faith the best that we can. Meanwhile, those nagging doubts are still there for us to stumble over. Better to confront them head on and get on about the kingdom’s business with confidence and joy.
Next Week’s Passage: John 21:1-4