26 After eight days His disciples were again inside with the doors shut, and Thomas was with them. Jesus came and stood among them, and said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then He said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at My hands. Put your hand here and place it in My side. Do not be faithless, but believing.”
28 Thomas answered Him, “My Lord and my God!”
29 Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen, and have yet believed.”
It is eight days later. Including Easter as a day, we are back to Sunday again. Jesus and the disciples have come to Jerusalem for the Passover festival and now Passover is over. The disciples are going to have to return to Galilee. But, here we go again. Jesus appears suddenly and this time Thomas is there.
First thing Jesus does is announce everything is going to be all right. Shalom. Peace. Then Jesus speaks directly to Thomas. He has knowledge of Thomas’s prior skepticism.
“Put your finger here, and look at My hands. Put your hand here and place it in My side. Do not be faithless, but believing.”
Let’s think about these scars, for a moment. Jesus has a new body. The kind of body that looks like him, but is very different. He is not identical to the Jesus they knew before. They recognize him by what he says and by his actions. But, there is also the scars. What are they all about?
If Jesus is given a new resurrection body, we’ll call it, why keep the scars?
Well, scars are a sign of God’s original covenant commitment to his people. Circumcision. A sign that God is committed to humanity.
Now in the new covenant with all of humanity, God’s son, himself, bears this permanent sign of his humanity, even as he rules from heaven. The first human of the new creation takes his place as ruler in the heavenly dimension.
Thomas is the first person in John’s gospel to recognize Jesus for who he really is.
Then we hear Jesus not so much criticize Thomas as he does encourage us. This is meant as an encouragement for all who do not see Jesus physically, but who still believe.
Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen, and have yet believed.”
So, there we have it. The story begins with the invisible God, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…”
Then we have the visible God, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…”
To the invisible God, God of empty tomb and folded grave cloths, to the visible God again, “Put your finger here, and look at My hands. Put your hand here and place it in My side…”
To the invisible God…the one we worship.
Look up Isaiah 49:16 and think about how this connects.