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Blessed Are Those Who Believe

Written by: Blair Lane

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You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.

- John 20:29


“See it to believe it” and “I’ll believe it when I see it” are two common phrases I’ve grown up hearing. Usually they refer to commercials or other things that seem “too good to be true.” These are claims so outrageous that they are initially met with a doubt that can only be taken away by witnessing them firsthand. What if you can’t witness them firsthand? How do you deal with the doubt?


We’re all human, and we’re all prone to doubt sometimes. We may doubt that we’ll pass a test or make it to work on time, that the weather will be nice, that others will follow through on their promises, and much more. We doubt things we can’t see or can’t control until we personally see it come true.


And sometimes we doubt God.


We may doubt His love, His forgiveness, His plan, or even His existence, and yet, He still accepts us and reminds us of these truths every day.


John 20:24-29 is about a man in the Bible most commonly known as “Thomas the Doubter.” He wasn’t with the rest of the disciples when Jesus first visited them after His resurrection. They all told Thomas about what they had seen while fellowshipping with Jesus, but he wouldn’t believe them. He said, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side” (John 20:24).


Eight days later, the disciples gathered together again, and Jesus appeared to them. This time, Thomas was there.


Jesus encouraged Thomas to touch the wounds in His hands and side. “Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!” He said (John 20:27).


Thomas immediately believed that Jesus, his Lord and God, had risen from the dead.

Because he had seen Him.


“Then Jesus told him, ‘You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me’” (John 20:29).


Thomas doubted the resurrection of Jesus because it seemed too good to be true. A man coming back from the dead and appearing to people was an outrageous claim. Impossible, even.


But with God, all things are possible. Jesus knew that Thomas would only believe the truth if he saw it for himself.


Sometimes, we doubt things until we see them for ourselves, but God doesn’t always reveal Himself with grand gestures, signs, and wonders. He can, yet Jesus says that we are blessed when we believe in Him without ever having seen him physically.


That doesn’t, however, mean that God doesn’t find other ways to reveal Himself to us. He understands that we have doubts sometimes, and He wants us to have faith to trust in Him every day. We’re constantly surrounded by proofs of God’s love and truth, just maybe in ways we don’t expect.


Even though Thomas doubted Him, Jesus still loved him and appeared to him to dispel his doubts because Thomas, despite his doubts, still wanted to know and see Jesus.


God’s love is unconditional. No matter how many times we doubt or question, God loves us enough to continually show us that He lives, loves, and forgives. Whether it’s through an answered prayer, reading in His Word, encouragement from someone, or just something that makes you smile, God provides reminders of Who He is and what He can do. We will see those reminders if we continue to seek God every day in spite of our doubts.


I’ve had my own doubts throughout my life, but again and again, God has revealed His unfailing love to me. We don’t have to be ashamed, God accepts us in spite of our doubts. He knows what it means to be human and to have questions, and, as with Thomas, He will show Himself and His love to us if we will only seek Him.


Reflection

1. Is there a specific time that you have doubted God, His love, or His plan?

2. How did God help to dispel those doubts?

Prayer

Dear Jesus,

Thank You for accepting and loving me, despite my doubts. Your love is unconditional and everlasting, and although there is nothing I can do to earn it, You give it freely every day. Help me to be constantly reminded of You and Your love. Grow my faith so that I may believe and have peace in You when doubts invade my thoughts. Amen.



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