“Peace be with you.” 20 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. 21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” 22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld."
24 Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe."
26 Eight days later, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Although 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, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.” 28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” - John 20:19-29
I'm like Thomas in so many ways. It is easy for us to believe things when we see them with our own eyes. But to believe in a God we have never seen? That's a little more difficult. Yet, so many people do. Why is that?
Do you believe that what the Bible says is true? I do. Why? Because God revealed Himself to me in a sermon one Sunday morning. It was like the sermon was written just for me. That was when I fully believed. That was when I began reading the Bible with new interest, realizing that the things Jesus said, the things that God said through it's various writers were indeed true.
Do you believe that you will live forever? I do. Why? Because Jesus told me that I would in John 3:16.
"16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life." - John 3:16
If we truly believe that we will live forever with God on The New Earth (Rev 21) why don't we live like it? Why do we keep living and breathing in the things of this world? This place is ruled by Satan (Ephesians 2:2).
We're going to try a little exercise. Go back up to the story of Thomas's belief. Grab that exclamation point at the end of verse 29. Now tip it over on its side. We have a dot and a long line. If that line extended on forever, if that life represents our life in eternity, why do we live our lives as if we're still in the dot?
The death rate on this planet is 100%. We are all going to die here. But God has PROMISED US eternal life!! What an amazing gift! Our sins will be forgiven, despite our unworthiness and then we get to live forever with no pain, no suffering and surrounded with loving brothers and sisters, like King David, Noah, Moses, Ruth, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Let's live and think that way!! We should live life like an exclamation point, not a period.
I invite you to sing this worship song with me. Listen to the words and sing them loudly. Imagine singing them in heaven to Jesus. Think eternally and take His message"to all nations" . . . making disciples as we go.
Hosanna - Hillsong