Grace, Ransom, Healer

John 20:
25…But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though 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; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Ransom; a payment for the release of a prisoner

Thomas shared a real-time relationship with Jesus, but all these centuries later the nickname “doubting” is still the first thing we remember about him. “Doubting is a nickname that doesn’t really fit because as the verses show, in that moment he was absolutely certain.  “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” 

Each heart of those friends closest to Jesus had been wounded by the betrayal that led to Jesus’s death.  For Thomas that wound had festered into doubt.  Some of the disciples had seen Jesus, but not him. “Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!”  Then Jesus singled out Thomas.  

The beauty of this story is that Thomas’s doubts have became incidental.  Jesus showed Thomas the scars of His own wounds one-by-one for a specific purpose; that his wounded heart might be ransomed from doubt and healed.  That makes scars the most important point of this story. 

Wounds often leave a scar and healed scars still have a purpose for friends of Jesus today.  Scars can tell a story of healing that has the power to ransom someone else’s doubt and lead them to repentance.  Scars are not to be wasted.   They are the evidence that Jesus heals wounded hearts and gives them a sign to share of the resurrecting love of God Almighty,  Alleluia!

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