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That You May Believe

Lent 2022

Read John 20:19-31

19 On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. 21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” 22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.”

24 Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.”

26 Eight days later, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Although 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, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.” 28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

“That you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing, you may have life in his name. That is the purpose for all that John wrote. If John published his Gospel today as a biography, the title would not be, Jesus Christ: The Full Historical Account or Jesus Christ: In the Words of the One Who Knew Him Best. It would be, Jesus Christ: That You May Have Life. In that title, you learn how the Gospel should be read, its purpose, and reason for existence.

Whether the first time or one-thousandth time we read it, eyes of faith see things we never noticed before and we are once again drawn to the wonderful grace of God. Because of this disciple’s testimony, in addition to the testimony of the other disciples and apostles, we believe that Jesus is the Christ, and we have life in Jesus’ name.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for your servants who faithfully proclaimed your word. Thank you for your Holy Spirit who created faith in me through the testimony of your disciples. Strengthen me to boldly give witness of my faith to others that they too may believe that you are the Christ, and by believing have life in your name. Amen.

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