24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, the one called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.
25 Then the other disciples said to him: “We have seen the Lord”. However, he said to them: “Unless I see in His hands the mark of the nails and I put my finger into the place of the nails and put my hand into His side, I will never believe.
We do not know where Thomas was, or why He was not with the other disciples when Jesus appeared to them.
We may wonder why it was that Jesus did not wait until all the disciples were all together, since He knows all things, and He would have known that Thomas would have been absent.
Perhaps we can assume that his not being present would lead to another revelation of the glory of Jesus, and a further opportunity for more teaching that would benefit His church throughout all future generations.
Naturally enough the other disciples were eager to share the fantastic news that they had seen the Lord. However, Thomas does not share their enthusiasm. In fact he appears to have been quite harsh in the way he replied to his colleagues.
In modern language Thomas ‘poured cold water’ onto the enthusiasm of the other disciples.
Thomas was not in a place of faith, and the only thing that was going to convince him was to be able to see the wounds of Jesus and to place his fingers and hands into them.
We must not be harsh in our view of Thomas, because we might have reacted in exactly the same way.
We must remember that Thomas would have been no different from the other disciples in not understanding, or believing the words of Jesus that He would rise from the dead on the third day.
We must also understand that Thomas appears not to have had confidence or faith in his colleagues, since he did not believe their testimony.
Having been together for three years we might assume that there had been built up a mutual bondage of trust and truthfulness. Yet this bond does not seem to have out-weighed the unbelief of Thomas.
Throughout our life in Jesus we will also face those who do not believe our testimony, or who pour cold water onto our enthusiasm. It is also likely that we might act in the same way as Thomas when others share their testimony. We also might respond with: “I believe it when I see it”.
The way to deal with both situations is to have the deep seated knowledge that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead is eternally able to do far more that we can ever imagine.
I pray that you will begin to understand the incredible greatness of His power for us who believe Him – Ephesians 1.19 (NLT).