“So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’ But he said to them, ‘Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.’” vs. 25
There is an intensely personal dimension to faith. Just because someone has seen Jesus and come to believe, does not insure that those who hear the story will also become believers. We might wish that this was not so. We would love it if all who heard our testimony would also believe it. But that’s not how it works. Those things which we say to others about the Christ will fall on deaf ears until the Holy Spirit opens the heart. Maybe that’s what Thomas was missing. He wasn’t there when Jesus breathed the Spirit on the other disciples…and without the Spirit, faith was impossible. That’s why Martin Luther wrote in his Small Catechism, “I believe that I cannot by my own understanding or effort believe in Jesus Christ my Lord or come to him, but the Holy Spirit has called me through the gospel…” Those words remind us that, even if we can’t convince people to believe, it’s essential to share the good news of forgiveness and love that comes to us through Jesus. In that gospel message–lived and proclaimed–the Holy Spirit touches hearts and minds, and faith is birthed.
Thought for the Day: How did the Holy Spirit lead me to faith?