24 Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “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.”
26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” 28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
Twenty-one centuries after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, many people are now skeptical of the divinity of Jesus and the authenticity of the church/movement that he created. Indeed, if one were to only look at the church of Christ as an organization that mimics an empire it’s pretty hard to believe in the sincerity or effectiveness of the salvation that Jesus preached. Nevertheless, when the events of my life or this world begin to make me doubt the ministry of Jesus, I often refer back to the 20th chapter of John’s Gospel. Although the disciple Thomas gets singled out, the disciples are in hiding because they are afraid and confused. Not only were they not certain about the divinity of Jesus, they were also unclear about the value of the time that they had spent with Jesus.
However, after seeing the nail scarred hands and spending at least forty days with the resurrected Jesus, the message of salvation became real to them. They became living witnesses to the divinity and salvation of Jesus Christ. The disciples gave their lives and most of their possessions in their quest to share the message of salvation with the world. The original manuscripts of the Gospels cost approximately the equivalent of $250,000 to make in the ancient world. Such large sums were spent to chronicle the life and ministry of Jesus because his followers were fully committed to sharing the stories about Jesus, their Lord and their God.
As 21st century followers of Jesus, what stories are we sharing about our Lord and Savior? Are we letting the world affect us or are we out there affecting the world? Whether we be preachers or laypeople our most important sermons don’t occur while we are standing in the pulpit but while we walking down the street.