Believing Without Seeing

2020-04-19 – Year A – Easter 2 – The Rev. Christopher M. Klukas
1 Peter 1:3-9; Psalm 111; John 20:19-31

Faith vs. Sight

  • Thomas is often called “doubting Thomas” because of the interactions recorded in the Gospel lesson that we read today.
    • Jesus appeared to all of the other apostles in a locked room. But Thomas wasn’t present. When Jesus appeared to them, he said “Peace be with you” and he showed them his hands and side. It is only then that John says “the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord” (v. 20). Before this, they were just scared.
    • When they tell Thomas about what happened, he is skeptical. (v. 25)
    • A week later Thomas gets the chance to do exactly what he asked for, and he believed based on the evidence of what he could see.
    • Can you really blame him?
  • I’ll believe it when I see it.
  • Pandemic Show – Scientist Entrepreneur whose mission it is to develop a universal vaccine for the flu.
    • The entrepreneur has faith in himself and in his vision.
    • The Gates foundation is not so sure and needs to be convinced.
  • I think it is a part of our human nature that we desire tangible assurances.
    • In the Old Testament, the work of God is often accompanied by signs.
    • Similarly, throughout the ministry of Jesus people frequently asked for signs.
    • God knows this about us, and he is often gracious enough to give them.

Faith vs. Wishful Thinking

  • The assurance of things hoped for – Hebrews 11:1.
  • How can we believe when we can’t see?
  • Assurances beyond sight
    • The Resurrection of Jesus is an historically documented event. The best way to explain all of the various pieces of data is to believe that it actually happened.
      • The Resurrection stands up to scrutiny.
      • The Bible documents many other interactions between God and his people and his intervention in the world.
    • The witness of believers throughout history and today.
    • Personal experience and the assurance of salvation
  • Faith/Believe is different from intellectual assent. To decide that the resurrection is true is one thing, but to put your faith in it is another.
    • This involves trust. It is a faith so sure you could and would bet your life on it.
  • “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:28)
  • “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed “(John 20:29).

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