Tuesday, December 29, 2015
Jesus Appears Again
“But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.” (John 20:24-25)
The other Apostles had been there when Jesus came into the room and revealed himself to them Sunday evening after he was resurrected. Thomas was not there, and refused to believe the testimony of the others until he physically touched the scars from the nails and the spear in his side. I guess he was from Missouri.
“And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.
And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.
Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed. And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.” (John 20:26-31)
Jesus had instructed his disciples to meet him in Galilee at a certain place. On Monday, a week after the resurrection, the disciples were assembled together as he had told them, and Thomas was with them. Once again Jesus appeared among them without opening the doors, greeting them. He then asked Thomas to touch the scars and believe. Thomas didn’t need to. He just called Jesus his Lord and his God. Jesus did not rebuke Thomas for not believing until he saw, but he said that those who would believe simply because of the testimony of others or God’s word would be much more blessed.
There are a great many people like Thomas. While other people can believe without worrying whether Jesus was crucified on Thursday or on Friday, people Like Thomas need that information in order to make a commitment. Until they are convinced of the Bible’s historical and factual accuracy they will not believe. When we accept and teach traditions that cause doubt about the scriptures, we leave them with little hope of salvation. Our doctrine is critical. In I Timothy 4:16, Paul told Timothy, “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.” If we are to win the people God has sent us to. It is critical we give them the information they need to make a decision. II Timothy 2:15 instructs, “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” If we genuinely care about people’s souls, we will study to make sure we are providing the truth so they can make real commitments.
“After these things Jesus showed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise showed he himself. There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of his disciples.
Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing.
They say unto him, We also go with thee.
They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing. But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. ” (John 21:1-4)
Jesus appeared to disciples again, at the Sea of Galilee. At the time Peter, Thomas, Nathanael, and James and John were present. Peter decided he wanted ot go fishing and the others went with him. After fishing all night they had caught nothing . The next morning they saw Jesus standing on shore but didn’t recognize him.
“Then Jesus saith unto them, Children, have ye any meat?
They answered him, No.
And he said unto them, Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find. They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes.
Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved saith unto Peter, It is the Lord.
Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisher's coat unto him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea. And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were not far from land, but as it were two hundred cubits,) dragging the net with fishes.” (John 21:5-9)
Jesus asked them if they had any food and they said no, so he told them to cast the net out the other side of the ship. When they did, the net was filled. John remembered that when Jesus called them the same thing had happened and told Peter it was the Lord. Peter dove into the water and started swimming to shore, while the others rowed to shore dragging the net. They were only about a hundred yards from shore.
“As soon then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread. Jesus saith unto them, Bring of the fish which ye have now caught.
Simon Peter went up, and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three: and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken.
Jesus saith unto them, Come and dine. And none of the disciples durst ask him, Who art thou? knowing that it was the Lord. Jesus then cometh, and taketh bread, and giveth them, and fish likewise. This is now the third time that Jesus showed himself to his disciples, after that he was risen from the dead.” (John 21:9-14)
Jesus already had fish cooking on the fire, but he told them to bring some of what they had caught as well. When Peter pulled the net ashore and they started sorting them there were a hundred and fifty three big fish, each weighing several pounds. It was far more weight than their nets would usually stand. None of them dared ask who he was or how he knew where the fish were, because they knew he was the Lord. This was the third time Jesus had appeared to them after the resurrection, about a month before he ascended into Heaven in Acts 1.