John 20:26 Eight days later His disciples were again inside, and Thomas was with them. Jesus *came, the doors having been shut, and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be to you.”27 Then He *said to Thomas, “Place your finger here, and see My hands; and take your hand and put it into My side; and do not continue in disbelief, but be a believer.”28 Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”29 Jesus *said to him, “Because you have seen Me, have you now believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.” I sense there are a lot of Doubting Thomas's in our world today and many of them have been born-again, but they are ignoring the fact that we are to believe ALL that Jesus teaches and ALL of the Word of God!! The amount of doubt it takes to subdue the faith given to us at the point of salvation is a remarkable amount of doubt. But when our enemy is on point to constantly inundate us with reasons to doubt it is not surprising that we too many times choose the lesser faith, or only believe in things we can see or that make sense to us. In reality, according to scripture, that is not faith at all.
Jesus showed Thomas the "real thing" by having him place his hand on his side where the spear had been thrust and then Jesus said do not continue in disbelief, but be a believer.” So Jesus called out Thomas as not fully being a believer and he did this by standing right in front of him! Maybe we need Jesus to stand right in front of us. Then we wouldn't even need the Holy Spirit and we would only have faith as long as we were right beside Jesus to SEE that He is really here. In God's great plan, He fixed this whole problem by giving us the Holy Spirit to help our unbelief at all times. So what do we do? So many discount the need for the Holy Spirit, and modern-day religion, in its watered-down impression of our faith discounts the reality of the Holy Spirit. So dangerous!!
The Holy Spirit shows us the mysteries of God and the Word of God is Jesus present and accounted for in every way. Johnn 1:14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us; and we saw His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. If we try to deny the Word of God being Jesus then we begin to hedge our bets on the whole thing and that just won't work. Scripture clearly says that our Bible is Jesus and since that is the truth we must realize that Jesus is right here with us. To deny our need to trust ALL the Word of God is to deny the very faith we need to live an abundant life. Most people have problems with the "spiritual" side of our faith and with that doubt comes many questions more from a human standpoint than a spiritual one. Thus Doubting Thomas or the lesser faith.
The cause of this lack of "greater faith" is the human element. We are dangerous in our reasoning to the point we must "see" something and touch it to believe it is real. Once again, Jesus Himself said Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.” You may say "Does He mean to "just believe?" YES! If you cannot get to that point then faith is not a reality to you and that can change today, just like it changed for Thomas in the above verses. To develop our faith means we must live by faith and faith alone, and God has given us ways to build our faith. Paul wrote the following in Romans 10:17 17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. The power of the Word of God is the very basis for our faith, so if we come like Thomas needing to "see" the proof that Jesus is alive we will see it in the Word of God, which is Jesus. The result of proving your faith is mentioned also in 1 Peter 1: 7 so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which perishes though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; The result of your faith being proven is praise, glory, and honor as we realize the proof as a revelation. Revelation (def) - the making known of something that was previously secret or unknown.
The disciples realized their need for this greater faith and in Luke 17:1 Jesus tells them that there will be stumbling blocks to their faith and woe to the one through whom they come. It is one thing to not have faith in God, and still another thing to cause another to lose their faith, or doubt God. It is so important for our belief to be pure belief and that faith if it is real, is contagious and will only build up other's faith. Continuing in verse 5 the disciples say this
5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” Then Jesus tells them the following truth in verse 6. 6 But the Lord said, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and be planted in the sea’; and it would obey you.
The greater faith is a pure faith that God sees and responds to and that is the faith we must have. As Jesus told Thomas do not continue in disbelief, is also a command to those who are born again and want the greater faith. Keep in mind. We either believe or we don't! It is time to make up your mind and decide if you believe the whole Word of God or cherry-pick the parts you like or agree with. Jesus' words are still relevant today if you are seeking His ways. All of this comes into focus now when we read Matthew 7:7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.8 For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.
Do you want to please God? The writer of Hebrews speaks to this question in Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for the one who comes to God must believe that He exists, and that He proves to be One who rewards those who seek Him. Faith or Greater Faith. I choose the Greater Faith!
The Pilgrimage Continues