April 6th, '18
rights reserved © message by Kris Jackson
Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came"
Poor Thomas. He is so criticized and maligned
by the commentators; probably not deserving half of it. He is nicknamed Didymus
which the newer translations all interpret as "the twin". Thomas was a twin
both in a literal and a figurative sense. The Bible gives no hint as to who was
his brother or twin sister. His name is linked together with Matthew in the
first three Gospels. That is no coincidence. The two likely paired up when
Jesus sent them out "two by two" to preach and heal the sick. Note some great qualities;
Thomas was devoted unto death. His first recorded statement had to do with
Lazarus. Tom cried, "Let us also go, that we may die with him" (John 11:16). We
admire his boldness but question his pessimism. Twin natures wrestled within. Didymus
means "double". Like Esau and Jacob striving within Rebekah's womb so fear
and faith, passion and pessimism, devotion and doubt strove in St.
Thomas's breast and likewise in our own. The Poet Faust lamented, "Alas, two
souls live in my breast apart". In Wilkerson's book, Two of Me, the Didymus
issue is explored. "For what I wish to do, that do I not; and what I hate,
that do I" (Romans 7:15). For a better portraiture of Thomas may I direct the
reader to his bathroom mirror?
Another great quality, Thomas was a seeker. It
was he that questioned, "Lord...how can we know the way?" to which Jesus replied,
"I am the way, the truth, and the life..." (John 14:4,6) Augustine quipped,
"Thomas doubted that we may never doubt". The other ten (Judas had left the
Supper by then) sat tight-lipped. Thomas at least raised his hand and engaged
the Teacher. The only stupid question is the question not asked.
"But Thomas...was not with them when Jesus came".
He may have been alone grieving Jesus' death. His faith may have taken a
week-long dive. "But Thomas..." That "but" reveals the Adam side of human nature.
Don't be so quick to castigate his error though for skipping church one weekend
because none of the other disciples believed in the resurrection until they saw
Jesus with their own eyes either.
At least Thomas was back with the other
disciples the following Sunday. Blue moods come and go. Jesus showed up; walked
right through a locked door. Thomas had earlier said, "Except I see the nail
prints in His hands, and thrust my hand into the wound in His side I will not
believe". Remember, never say "I will not". Jesus singled him out. "Thomas, put
your finger right here in my hands, and be not faithless, but believing". Jesus
had called the world a "faithless and unbelieving generation". Ouch. Thomas's
"but" was exposed before the whole group. (I can't believe I said that). And
God will deal or with our Didymus nature too. Another great quality
however is revealed. Thomas fell on his face and confessed, "My Lord, and my
God!" (John 20:28) Doubting Thomas became shouting Thomas! So now no one can
say that all the disciples were gullible men that blindly followed some
Galilean Pied Piper. At least one ordered an autopsy and scientific
investigation. Thomas demanded evidence but once the lab report came back he
was quick to fall to his knees and confess the deity of Christ. And according
to Acts 1:13 Thomas was there waiting for the Holy Spirit to fall at Pentecost.
The skeptic was convinced. And we never see him doubting again. One glimpse of
Jesus and the Twin forever shook his double.