Friday, July 17, 2009
Prospective Shift One
One of the reasons we attend our church-Harvest Bible Chapel, is that Pastor James can take a passage that I have read a multitude (of sins? of angles? of the dead? the saints? I digress but you gotta love the concordance)of times and yet he will present a take on that passage that forces a prospective shift. The latest one is about the Apostle Thomas.
The verses are from John 20
24Now Thomas (called Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25So 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 it."
I always read that passage as an example of a lack of faith and a cautionary example of living out your faith. The classic negative example and as such I always looked askew at Thomas.
This is what Pastor James pointed out.
From John 20 again.
19On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" 20After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
What Thomas was really asking for was only what the other Apostles had already received. He missed out and only desired the same conformation of Christ's resurrection.
Pastor James then said Thomas has gotten a bit of a raw deal (paraphrase) because he was not asking for the extraordinary only for what had already been given. Jesus statement of 29Then Jesus told him, "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." was for all of them not just Thomas.
Prospective shift on Thomas-I do not look at him in the same light anymore. I find that I would definitely would have been Thomas in that circumstance and probably would not have availed myself as well as he did when he was martyred.