September 29 I Wednesday
“Then Jesus told him, ‘Because you have seen Me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’” —John 20:29
When we look back at history, we may think that everybody found it easy to believe Jesus, but that is not true. When Jesus was alive, there were many who doubted. In fact, when Jesus taught at the synagogue in His hometown, the people challenged Him by saying, “Isn’t this the carpenter’s Son? Isn’t His mother’s name Mary, and aren’t His brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? Aren’t all His sisters with us?” (Matthew 13:55-56). We are told halfway through Jesus’s ministry, “even His own brothers did not believe in Him” (John 7:5). Surely, Jesus’s siblings must have realized that something was different about Him from the start, but they did not. Mary never told them. She kept all the things that she knew and pondered them in her heart.
It is when people have a personal meeting with Jesus Christ that they become sure, not by all the arguments we may well present, but by a personal experience, because Christianity is not about intellectual conviction—Christianity is about a personal relationship. Jesus tells us, “Now this is eternal life: that they know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent” (John 17:3). This is what it is all about: knowing the Father and the Son.
Paul tells us, “...God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us” (Romans 5:5). The Holy Spirit sheds abroad the love of God in our hearts. We know God loves us, not only because we believe it, but because the Holy Spirit also shows us. Paul says we have assurance that we belong to Christ because “The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children” (Romans 8:16). How do we know we are children of God? Because the moment we believe in Jesus, the Spirit of God lives in our hearts.
Despite the fact that Thomas the doubter had to witness Jesus’s resurrected body in order to be convinced, Jesus told him, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:29). As the Spirit reveals Christ to us, we become sure and develop a living relationship with Him. Although it is important that we present truth, it is the Holy Spirit who alone opens people’s eyes and gives them the understanding of Jesus.
Some of us may still have doubts and these doubts are entirely legitimate. But we need not throw them out the window as if we are not supposed to have them. We may have and live with doubt, but the answer to our doubt is found in a personal relationship with Christ.
Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, I may still have doubts about You at times, but Your Spirit within me gives me the assurance that I am a child of God. Thank You, Lord.