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Summary: A sermon about what can happen when your absent from church

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John 20

[19] Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

[20] And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.

[21] Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

[22] And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

[23] Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

[24] But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.

[25] The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.

Title: Are You A Twin?

ILL. You have probably heard it said that everyone has a twin. And what is meant by that of course is that its highly likely that out there in this large world populated with billions of people its likely that there is someone, maybe several someones that look like you or look like you enough that they could pass as your twin. We see examples of this all the time in regards to famous people like Presidents or Actors. Every time we get a new President you eventually see a picture of his look-alike. Now when I ask you to day "Do You Have A Twin" I don’t mean in "appearance" but rather "disappearance" that is in "behavior"?

Now, other than Judas the apostle who gets the worst rap is Thomas. Though his nickname was "Didymus," or “the Twin”, we know him as "Doubting Thomas". We call him "Doubting Thomas" because of his initial refusal to believe that Jesus raised from the dead.

I am not suggesting of course that you are Thomas’s Twin in-so-far as your doubting that Jesus rose from the dead because I am assuming that you don’t have a problem with believing that he did. No rather I want you to consider whether or not your a Twin with Thomas in-so-far as his being absent when Jesus comes?

Look with me there at vv. 19-23

[19] Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.

[20] And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.

[21] Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

[22] And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

[23] Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

Imagine the reality of this scene. It was Sunday night. The doors were shut (no doubt locked) the disciples were all together and hiding in fear from the Jewish authorities.

And in the midst of their fear something happens...

1. Jesus shows up! That is Jesus shows up when and where his people are gathered together.

2. He pronounces peace upon them "peace be unto you" that is "relax, don’t worry, don’t be afraid". Jesus comes to communicate and to comfort.

3. He shows them His hands and His side, that is He proves to them that it really is Him! And look at the result, it says that they were glad when they saw the Lord. So just being in the presence of Jesus they moved from fearfulness to gladness

Jesus shows up when and where his people are gathered together.

4. He not only communicated with them and comforted them but he also commissioned them v.21 "Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you."

Jesus gave them directions. He told them what he wanted them to do. They were told what God’s will was for their life, and that was evangelism.

Wouldn’t that be nice? Wouldn’t you like to be told what God’s will is for your life? Of course you would. The thing is that Jesus shows up when and where His people are gathered together, and He does so for the purpose of communicating with them, comforting them and for commissioning them.

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