Day 28 – Jesus meets his friends again

Bible reading: John 20:19–20, 24–29

Jesus appears to his disciples

19 On the evening of that same day, the first day of the week, the disciples were all together. They had locked the doors of the room because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Then Jesus came and he stood among them. He said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’ 20 After he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples were very, very happy when they saw the Lord.

John 20:19-20 EasyEnglish Bible (EASY)

Jesus shows himself to Thomas

24 One of the 12 disciples was called Thomas. (He was also called ‘the Twin’.) He was not with the other disciples when Jesus came to them. 25 So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’ But Thomas said to them, ‘I will never believe that he is alive again unless I myself see him. I want to see the marks of the nails in his hands. I want to touch where the nails were with my finger. I want to put my hand into his side where the spear went in. If I cannot do that, I will not believe.’

26 Eight days after that, the disciples were in the house again. This time Thomas was with them. They had locked the door. But Jesus came and he stood among them. He said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’ 27 Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger in here. Look at my hands. Put your hand here, in my side. Do not refuse to believe what is true. Now, believe.’ 28 Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord, and my God!’ 29 Jesus said to him, ‘You believe because you have seen me. Other people have not seen me, but they do believe in me. God is really happy with those people.’

John 20:24-29 EasyEnglish Bible (EASY)

Reflection

Imagine the situation. The friends of Jesus are still confused and upset. They still fear arrest and the death penalty for being Jesus’ friends. The doors are locked. Terror fills them. And then, to their amazement, Jesus is among them, bringing his peace and love! They could not believe it. So he showed them the wounds in his hands and side.

Where was Thomas?

This statement about the evening does not even begin to describe their happiness: ‘... they were overjoyed when they saw the Lord’. But not Thomas. For some reason he was absent on this occasion.

A loyal but slightly discouraged person, he had said earlier, ‘Let’s go up to Jerusalem and die with him.’

The others told him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’ But he was not going to believe that Jesus was alive unless the evidence was very obvious. He wanted to put his finger in the nail holes and his hand into the spear wound on Jesus’ side.

Thomas doubted no more

A week later, the friends are gathered again and Thomas is with them. Despite the locked doors, Jesus comes to join them. He invites Thomas to check the things that he had demanded, and tells him to stop doubting and to believe. Thomas’ response was to cry out, ‘You are Lord and my God!’ Thomas believed because of the evidence in front of his eyes.

Jesus also speaks well of those in the future who would believe based on the evidence of those who were there. Are you one of them?

And, Thomas proved the reality of his response by taking the gospel far – to India!