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grenepages_Olufemi Babalola FRESH BREAD

The Thomas Approach

grenepages_Olufemi Babalola FRESH BREAD_The Thomas Approach

Of all the events and stories around the resurrection, the one I found most intriguing is that of Thomas. He was not there when Jesus first appeared to the apostles. Therefore, they told him of the Lord’s appearance. To this Thomas replied, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it” John 20:25 NIV.

The Lord heard what Thomas said and He had to reappear a week after. Because of this event, Thomas has been nicknamed, doubting Thomas. He is rarely remembered as Didymus (twin) but for expressing doubt about the Lord’s appearance.

No other character in the Bible seems to have suffered criticism through the ages for his doubt or unbelief like Thomas. 

But perhaps we need to look at Thomas’ action in a new light. I stand to be corrected but I make bold to say that we have been shielded from the lesson we should have learnt from Thomas because we focused on his doubt. What we failed to see was that “his doubt” brought Jesus back. Jesus had to wait one more week else, a vacuum would be left behind. One of His apostles will go into the world with a divided mind and a corruption might be introduced to the resurrection story.

Thomas did not want to base his faith on what others said but on what he saw, touched and felt. I believe his desire to see go beyond the expression of doubt but a desperation to experience what others have experienced. Thomas did not want to revel in the testimonies of others; he wanted to share his too.

Unfortunately, most of us have based our faith on hearsay; we have not seen, touched and felt the power and the presence of God in our own lives. We have heard but we have not seen. We have not experienced in our own lives what we have read in the Bible or preached to us in our churches. People have shared testimonies of deliverance from sin, healing of sicknesses, miraculous provisions, baptism in the Holy Spirit and mighty manifestations of God’s power. They have seen the Lord but you have not.

Several Christians grapple with sin, sicknesses, and other implications of sin; the very things that took Jesus to the cross. We claim to belong to Him but we have not proofs that we are His. There is no distinction between the world and us. Unbelievers are quietly asking, “What difference does Jesus make?”

Perhaps, we need to take the Thomas approach and demand for a revelation of the Lord in our lives too. If Jesus heals, let me experience the healing. If He saves from sin, I want to experience it. If He provides then let me be a witness. I want to see too.

Today, I do not see Thomas as a doubting Thomas but the desperate one; the one who will not base his faith on what others said but on what He has seen, touched and felt. Our witness about Christ to the world is weak because our experience of Christ is weak. You do not need any special preparation or feel ashamed to tell people about what has worked for you consistently. There is a kind of confidence you exude when you tell people what you have experienced. No wonder Paul could confidently say,

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek” Romans 1:16 NKJV

Peter also said,

“For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty. For He received from God the Father honor and glory when such a voice came to Him from the Excellent Glory:” This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” And we heard this voice which came from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain” 2 Peter 1:16-18 NKJV

And John,

“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life — the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us” 1 John 1:1-2 NKJV

Perhaps we should reevaluate our efforts in winning the world over to Christ. Perhaps, it is not that souls are difficult to win but that our witness is weak because our experience of Christ is weak. Maybe we need to cry out like Thomas and ask Jesus to reveal Himself to us again so that we can go and boldly tell the world what we have seen.

 


 

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Olufemi Babalola is an enthusiastic writer and inspirational speaker; who is keen about creating inspirational pieces of writing. He is committed to spreading the knowledge of the Truth as the critical solution to personal, family, corporate and societal ruin. He believes that the lack in our lives is not the lack of resources but the lack of information required to obtain the resources. People are destroyed for the lack of knowledge. His writings focus on developing sound spiritual lives, purposeful living and maintaining wholesome relationships.

As a freelance writer, ‘Femi is a columnist in a number of electronic and print media. He is the author of Fresh Bread Blogs. He also coordinates Fresh Bread Haven works and he is the editor of Fresh Bread, a top-notch inspirational magazine focused on helping people experience the life in the Word. He has written so many articles, manuscripts, studies, tracts and his writings continue to inspire several lives.

You can reach him via olufemibabalola37@gmail.com or connect with him on Facebook (fb.com/femybabalola), Instagram and Twitter (@femmybabalola)

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