Summary: Be Believing in Jesus Christ... 1. Because He will keep His focus on you (vs. 24-26). 2. Because He will correct your faults (vs. 27). 3. Because He will build up your faith (vs. 27-31). 4. Because He will give you life that lasts forever (vs. 29-31).
Be Believing in Jesus Christ!
The Gospel of John
Sermon by Rick Crandall
Grayson Baptist Church - August 15, 2018
(Revised July 19, 2020)
*Please open your Bibles to John chapter 20. Here God's Word gives us the story of the Lord's resurrection on the very first Easter Sunday. Three days after dying on the cross for our sins, Jesus rose again from the dead! In vs. 14-17 the Lord appeared to Mary Magdalene. Later that evening Jesus appeared to His disciples. In vs. 19-25 we read:
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, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, "Peace be with you.''
20. Now when He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.
21. Then Jesus said to them again, "Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.''
22. And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit.
23. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.''
24. But Thomas, called Didymus, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.
25. The other disciples therefore said to him, "We have seen the Lord.'' But he said to them, "Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.''
*The disciples had a wonderful meeting with the Lord that night, but poor Thomas missed that big event, and tonight we'll look at Thomas' story. Let's begin by reading vs. 24-31, and as we read, please think about the great truth everybody should believe in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
*Have you ever felt left out? -- Like you got the short end of the stick? Everyone around you was getting some kind of big blessing, but somehow you got left out. That's the way Thomas must have felt here in vs. 24.
*Thomas missed seeing the Lord, and he went through 8 days of gut-wrenching doubt because he was left out. But in vs. 27, Jesus had a crucial message for Thomas. It’s the same message the Lord has for us today: Believe! Be believing in Jesus Christ.
1. BELIEVE IN JESUS FIRST, BECAUSE HE WILL KEEP HIS FOCUS ON YOU.
*Poor Thomas missed the big blessing that first Easter Sunday. We don't know where he was in vs. 24, but by the time he got back, Jesus was gone. Then in vs. 25 the other disciples said, "We have seen the Lord!" But Thomas said, "Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I WILL NOT BELIEVE.''
*Thomas did not see the Lord that first Easter day, but here's the great news: I may miss seeing Jesus, but He doesn't miss seeing me! And when Jesus came back 8 days later, He knew exactly what Thomas had said to the other disciples.
*Jesus saw Thomas, and the Lord certainly sees us. This should be a challenge to us, but also a great comfort: God sees me. He knows what’s going on in my life, and He cares.
*When the Lord appeared to Moses at the burning bush, one of the first things He told Moses was this: "I have surely seen the oppression of My people who are in Egypt, and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters, for I know their sorrows. So I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and large land, to a land flowing with milk and honey." (Exodus 3:7-8)
*God was watching over them, and child of God, He is watching over you!
*In the spring of 1905, Civilla Martin and her husband were staying in Elmira, New York. There, they became friends with a couple by the name of Doolittle. They were strong believers in the Lord.
*Mrs. Doolittle had been bedridden for almost 20 years, and her husband had an incurable illness that left him confined to a wheelchair. But despite all their hardships, the Doolittle's lived happy Christian lives. They were an inspiration and comfort to all who knew them.
*One day while Civilla and her husband were visiting the Doolittle's, her husband asked them the secret of their bright hope. Mrs. Doolittle's reply was simple: "His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me."