God is in the business of making dead things come alive. He’s done it before and he’ll do it again. He’s done it countless times before and he’ll do it countless times more.
But you can’t take my word for it. You’ll have to experience it for yourself. Faith is not built on hearsay or second hand accounts. Rather, faith is built on a personal relationship.
Just take the example of Thomas in John 20:24-31. Take some time to read it.
Thomas missed the first appearance of Jesus because he was not with the group. Notice v24 Thomas “was not with the disciples when Jesus came.” I wonder how much you miss out on because you’re not involved in Christian community? Thomas was not there … he had to rely on second-hand information. The other disciples had seen the nail scarred hands. The disciples had to tell Thomas, “We have seen the Lord!” To which he replied, “I’ll believe it when I see it.” Perhaps you’ve said such a thing before. We tend to be cynical people until we see it for ourselves.
Thomas wanted to see the nail marks. He wanted to put his hands into the side of the resurrected Jesus. The resurrected Jesus, in his grace, appears to the disciples. He greets them, “Peace be with you” but focuses his attention on Thomas. Don’t you love that Jesus understand our needs? Jesus invites Thomas to place his finger in his hand and side. “Stop doubting and believe,” Jesus instructed.
And then we find what I believe to be the strongest confession in the New Testament: Thomas proclaims, “My Lord and my God!”
It’s an accurate confession. Jesus is both Lord and God. The resurrection proves it. The first Easter morning proves it.
Jesus is both Lord and God. The resurrection proves it. The first Easter morning proves it.
Yet, the personal, possessive pronouns make this an intimate confession. My Lord and My God! This is not a rehearsed or reused phrase. This is not something Thomas heard and he’s now passing it off as his own. This is the confession of a man who has a first-hand experience with the risen Christ.
This is the confession of a man who has a first-hand experience with the risen Christ.
You need a personal experience with the resurrected Lord.
You need a personal confession of the resurrected Lord.
You might ask yourself: Have I had such an experience? Have I made such a confession?
Tradition (not the Bible) tells us that Thomas after this event travels to India and takes the message of the resurrection to people that needed to hear the life-giving message of Jesus Christ. Tradition tells us that after a successful ministry in India Thomas was eventually killed by mob who stabs him with spears and throws him into an oven.
From doubt to belief and from belief to a martyr’s death. The confession of Jesus as “my Lord and my God” take precedence over everything. If you confess Jesus as “my Lord and my God” you’re committed. There is no part-time confession of Jesus as Lord and God.