Summary: Character Study - Thomas - – sermon by Gordon Curley. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Realist (John 11:6-16)
The Questioner (John 14:1-6)
The Doubter (John 20:24-29)
• Some people are household names:
• You know who they are, and what they do or are famous for.
• Pele - Football
• Pavoroti - Singer
• Dickens - Literature
• Picasso - Painting & Art.
• Morcombe & Wise - Comedians.
• Einstein - Science.
WHAT IS TRUE IN THE SECULAR WORLD IS MIRRORED IN THE BIBLE:
Some people are linked to things:
• Samson & Haircuts.
• Joseph & his coat.
• Jonah & Fish.
• Eve & Apple(!).
• Noah & ark.
• Gideon & Fleece.
Some people are linked to occupations:
• Peter: Fisherman,
• Rahab: Harlot,
• Zacceus: Tax Collector.
• Luke: Doctor.
Some people are linked to particular deeds:
• John the baptiser.
• Judas the betrayer.
• John the beloved;
• Peter the rock & Stephen the Martyr.
Our character study tonight:
• Involves a man who throughout Church history;
• Has had attached to him an unfortunate nick-name – ‘Doubting Thomas’.
• The New Testament gives him several names:
• He is called ‘Thomas the Apostle’, also called ‘Judas Thomas’,
• Or ‘Didymus’ which means ‘Twin’,
• But perhaps he is better known as ‘Doubting Thomas’.
When it comes to the subject of doubt:
• Opinions among Christians vary greatly.
• To some, doubt represents rank unbelief!
• Others, though, argue that it is essential to any intelligent pursuit of the truth.
• Quote: “There lives more faith in honest doubt, than in all the creeds.
• Pick up any Christian book of quotes,
• And you will find the great men & women of God split as to their opinion.
• Personally, I don’t believe that we must choose sides,
• When it comes to the problem of doubt:
• I believe it is possible for both faith and doubt to coexist.
• Quote: "Doubts are the grappling hooks by which the mountains of truth can be scaled”.
Question: What do we mean by doubt?
• Doubt is different to unbelief
• “Unbelief is when we know what is right, but refuse to obey and trust.”
• Naaman – General of the Syrian army (2 Kings chapter 5 verse 12):
• Told by the prophet of God to wash in the river Jordan seven times – but he refused;
Saying; “the rivers of Damascus, better than any of the waters of Israel?
Couldn't I wash in them and be cleansed?" So he turned and went off in a rage”.
• “Unbelief is when God says something to us, but we refuse to do it.”
• That is wrong and ‘unbelief’ in the Bible is a sin.
• Because it is disobeying God.
Doubt is very different to unbelief
• Quote: “Doubt is when you want to believe but you are not sure you are able to.”
• And I do not believe that is a sin
• ‘Doubt’ is not being sure of the truth – and uncertain with your trust.