Summary: Having just returned from India and seeing the impact that Thomas had and is still having on this land I wanted to find out who Thomas was from a biblical point of view and see some of his motivations.
In the footsteps of Thomas
John 20:24-29 One of the disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. 25 They told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he replied, “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.”
26 Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. He said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”
28 “My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed.
29 Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who haven’t seen me and believe anyway.”
Having just returned from India and seeing the impact that Thomas had and is still having on this land I wanted to find out who Thomas was from a biblical point of view and see some of his motivations.
It seems fairly clear from historical evidence that Thomas was in India from 58AD until he was martyred in 72AD. The Church in Southern India was it seems founded by Him, and He is supposedly buried in Madras at the Church of St Thomas.
So what was it that drove Thomas to leave all He knew and travel a vast distance and die for the cause?
.He is often labeled doubting Thomas, but the evidence in India would suggest He doesn’t deserve this label. I had the privilege to go up to the point where he was murdered for the cause of Christ. It is a very high hill where he used to go and pray and also lived in a cave nearby. From a strategic point of view there would be no better position to pray from, as you can see the entire region
This morning I want to look at the nature of the Apostle Thomas as much as we can from the 3 times He is mention in scripture
Was He Thomas the doubter or Thomas the doer?
From the 3 times he is mentioned in scripture we see this about Thomas.
Willing to risk his life
willing to ask the hard questions
willing to accept the truth
I. Thomas Willing to Risk His Life (John 11:1-16)
1. The first time that we see Thomas mentioned is found in the passage about Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead
2. Let us read John 11:1-16
John 11:1-16 A man named Lazarus was sick. He lived in Bethany with his sisters, Mary and Martha. 2 This is the Mary who poured the expensive perfume on the Lord’s feet and wiped them with her hair. Her brother, Lazarus, was sick. 3 So the two sisters sent a message to Jesus telling him, “Lord, the one you love is very sick.”
4 But when Jesus heard about it he said, “Lazarus’s sickness will not end in death. No, it is for the glory of God. I, the Son of God, will receive glory from this.” 5 Although Jesus loved Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, 6 he stayed where he was for the next two days and did not go to them. 7 Finally after two days, he said to his disciples, “Let’s go to Judea again.”
8 But his disciples objected. “Teacher,” they said, “only a few days ago the Jewish leaders in Judea were trying to kill you. Are you going there again?”
9 Jesus replied, “There are twelve hours of daylight every day. As long as it is light, people can walk safely. They can see because they have the light of this world. 10 Only at night is there danger of stumbling because there is no light.” 11 Then he said, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but now I will go and wake him up.”
12 The disciples said, “Lord, if he is sleeping, that means he is getting better!” 13 They thought Jesus meant Lazarus was having a good night’s rest, but Jesus meant Lazarus had died.
14 Then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. 15 And for your sake, I am glad I wasn’t there, because this will give you another opportunity to believe in me. Come, let’s go see him.”
16 Thomas, nicknamed the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let’s go, too—and die with Jesus.”
The disciples have a good point here. They tell Jesus hey that isn’t such a great idea
. You know there are people out there who are trying to kill you
Jesus insist that they still Go
. Vs. 11 and 12 are a bit humorous if you ask me