John 20: Not By Sight

“You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing Me.” John 20:29. (NLT.)

“But these are written that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God. And that by believing in Him you will have life by the power of His name.” John 20:31 (NLT)

This chapter starts at the empty tomb. The stone was rolled away and Jesus has risen from the grave! He is alive! The disciples see Him and realize what they thought they knew, Jesus is the Messiah! Thomas, one of the disciples, was not there when Jesus first appeared to them. When they told him they had seen Jesus alive, Thomas said He would not believe until He saw Jesus.

It was 8 days later when the disciples were together again and Jesus came to them. Thomas was with them and Jesus told Thomas to “Look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. believe!” John 20:27 (NLT) Then Thomas believed that Jesus was Alive!

In verse 29 Jesus tells Thomas “You believe because you have seen Me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing Me.” And this is where faith comes into play. I’ve never seen Jesus, seen the holes in His hands or touched the wound in His side, but I believe what the Word says. He came as a baby, fully God and fully man. He willingly went to the Cross and died for the payment of my sin. And He overcame death, hell and the grave. He rose from the dead and Lives!

Verse 31 tells me that these things are written so that I will continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah! And, that because I believe I will continue to have life by the power of His name! It’s His Word that brings me hope, that strengthens my faith and reveals Jesus to me.

My prayer today is for a greater desire and love for His Word. I pray for the hunger for the Word would be continuous. I pray for a greater depth in my understanding. Thank you Lord for your Word and for the life it gives me. Amen.

What is God revealing to you today in chapter 20? Share your insights in the comment section below.

Day 14: Sift and Weigh Every Word – Proverbs 14

Day 14 Picture of white flowers

“There’s a way of life that looks harmless enough; look again, it leads straight to hell. Sure, those people appear to be having a good time, but all that laughter will end in heartbreak. Sift and weigh every word.” Proverbs 14:12-13 (The Message)

Sin can look harmless. It can be accepted and even enjoyed by those around me. It can be very tempting to just do what everyone else is doing. If everyone else seems to be doing it and they seem to be ok, then maybe? “Look again,” the verse says, this way of life will lead to heartbreak. Most definitely my heart break and God’s heartbreak. The New Living Translation says this path will lead to death!

I chose The Message paraphrase because I like what it says at the end of verse 13, “Sift and weigh every word.” The Word of God MUST be my plumb line. Everything I do, each action I take must line up with what it says. I can’t pick and choose what I like and leave out what I don’t like. Those around me, society and culture don’t determine what is sin.

My only defense against the trap of sin is to know God’s Word. I must be in it continually, keeping it close to me. Following its instruction won’t always be the popular choice. It may mean that I have to go against the grain. My life will look different. His Word will always lead me and direct me in the right way. I must trust what it says.

Thank you, Lord, that you are for me and not against me. Thank you that your Word will always provide the answers I am looking for. Today I pray you will increase my understanding of your Word and strengthen my faith to always follow its commands. Amen.

What is God speaking to you today in Proverbs 14? ? Share in the comments below or join the conversation on our Journaling Through Proverbs Facebook Group.