Mr. Spock, Doubting Thomas and me

The Apostle Thomas did not find faith to be easy. He doubted Jesus’ resurrection and demanded to feel Jesus’ wounds before being convinced that it was true. This is John 20:24-29

Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.” So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.” And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

I totally understand Thomas. Heck, I am doubting Thomas. As you know, I am the resident Revo skeptic. I doubt every conspiracy theory and demand we use the logic of Occum’s Razor on every event in which there is any doubt as to the cause. I won’t suffer trutherism, birtherism, Trigerism, Grassy Knollism or any other conspiracy theory in which the facts don’t add up to the conclusion. I demand facts first and conclusions second. Revoistas know that if you attempt to reverse the order – conclusions first, facts second – you are likely to get a flaming beat down from RD. I demand evidence and geometric logic…almost always. In one area of thought, however, I have reversed myself and I now arrive at the conclusion first.

I believe that Christ suffered, died, and was buried. On the third day he rose again in fulfilment of the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and His kingdom will have no end. That is the conclusion I have arrived at and no evidence can undermine it; no evidence is needed to support it.

It ain’t easy, however. MadBrad calls me Spock for a reason. Spock’s brain rebels at conclusions without supporting evidence. Spock’s ego hates it. The logic centers of my Spock brain scream that, in believing in the resurrection, am doing it backwards. I must have evidence first. I must see it to believe it. Spock tells me that, like Thomas, I must touch the wounds. Most of my life I was Thomas and Thomas still resides in my mind.

Christ told Thomas, however, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” That is really the point. That is the trick. That is the challenge. That is the meaning of it all. That is faith.

As a young man, I thought faith should come easy: Just wake up in the morning and it would be there. When I found it wasn’t there, I took the easy route and went with Spock and Thomas. I didn’t believe. Brad can bear me out on this. I treated the resurrection just like I would a 9/11 conspiracy theory. I demanded evidence and, without it, didn’t believe. My ego wouldn’t allow be to doubt the logic centers of my freakin’ brilliant intellect.

With age, however, comes wisdom. I am not quite as arrogant as I once was. Somewhere along the way, I decided that I would open my mind up to the possibility that the Grace of God is real, that the Holy Spirit works with us and that Christ is the Word made Flesh. I let go of my ego and I stopped rejecting Christ. I opened my mind and told Spock and Thomas to give it a rest for a while.

The result was, suddenly, an epiphany; a moment of clarity. It became evident to me that Faith is really the point. Faith means letting go of your ego and overcoming your arrogance. It means submitting to a greater good and a greater truth. It is peace, it is comfort, it is light. It is a really a wonderful gift that I had been rejecting!

It also means hard work. I am still Thomas and I am still Spock. The Thomas and Spock centers of my brain demand that I go through the process. They demand predominance. They demand skepticism, proof and doubt. They do constant battle with the part of my intellect that now understands the great gift that is faith.

I now understand that faith and skepticism can and should live together in the same house. With too much skepticism, faith dies. Thomas needed the proof of a bloody finger. He believed, but it was a faithless belief. Skepticism alone is faithless but, ironically, faith doesn’t exist without skepticism. If belief is based on nothing but the easy, empirical evidence of Thomas’ bloody finger, faith is unnecessary.

Faith and skepticism inhabit opposite sides of the same coin. Balancing faith and skepticism is an exercise that makes me happier, friendlier, a better husband, a better father, more peaceful and an all around better person. It is also, by the way, the path to Salvation.

I can now proclaim with complete faith that Christ is Risen! I believe it with all of my heart. I need no proof. Proof would undermine the need for Faith. Faith is what I need and I thank God that He has given me the gift. It is priceless.

Happy Easter.

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62 Responses to Mr. Spock, Doubting Thomas and me

  1. Woodface says:

    If this were facebook I would totally “Like” this.

    Well said. Good balance.

  2. jacksonsdad says:

    “Proof would undermine the need for Faith.”

    That’s the point, ain’t it? If we had tangible ‘proof’ then FAITH would be easy. In fact, it would cease to be ‘faith’ and become ‘acceptance/ acknowledgement/ acquiescence’.

    Of course, that wouldn’t keep the moonbats from still denying it. Proof schmoof… if it doesn’t fit the narrative it’s not admissible as evidence.

  3. MadBrad says:

    A REAL Revolution has occurred here. It is stunning to behold. One can only go from Spock/Thomas to expressing the Christian Faith like St. Thomas Aquinas after being touched by the hand of God. It’s the best thing we could hope to happen to any of us this Resurrection Sunday.

  4. jacksonsdad says:

    I got an e-mail today and it had a little video and in the video it said this….

    “The Creation Proves The Creator”

    That pretty well sums it up. From Purple Mountains Majesty to the Hammer, Anvil and Stapes… God’s wonders are impressive. Magical? Definitely. Miraculous? Sure looks that way to me.

    A sperm and an egg. The very process of their meeting seems choreographed (the most amazing magic trick ever?). But what happens afterward is nothing short of a miracle… life created from the perfect union of two seperate organisms.

    We take it for granted but that’s a friggin’ miracle folks.

  5. jct says:

    Miracles based on faith happen each and every day. The best that the razor can do is “what a remarkable coincidence” or “because we were focused on it, the solution appeared”. But the razor can’t account for the timely stranger, the turn of events from an unlikely source or the more simple support of the prayers of others.

    Faith is a choice. In my life it has been a choice well rewarded.

    Other things in life are based on consideration and analysis. There is room for agreement and disagreement.

    But faith stands alone as a mystery that science will never reveal, for it is only revealed from within our heart.

  6. Jen says:

    Beautiful post!

  7. fletcher says:

    Great post RD.

  8. TN_Cat says:

    One of your best RD. Happy Easter.

  9. Madnybeth says:

    Love this post RD! Happy Easter to all the Revo people! God is so good!

  10. BaconNeggs says:

    Happy Easter everyone, if its not an act of faith…”I hope” you have a pleasant Easter.

    Anyway as someone firmly on the Spock side of reasoning, the best I can say is that faith is an emotion much like love, you cant see it or touch it, but its a powerful force that most certainly exist for a lot of people.

    Of course Thomas is at liberty to have faith but as Spock said… once you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

    So for me the best I can say is that Christ existed but whether he was the son of God as claimed, is debatable.

    Also did Christ return to Earth just to diprove Doubting Thomas, 8 days after resurrection and accension to Heaven?

    Blame it on the Spock in me for thinking to ask such questions(hahaha).

  11. sig94 says:

    Great post RD. There is something about God that gnaws at us all. The unbelievers will take His name in vain during anger and will scream His name during an orgasm. To disregard His handiwork in Creation, so-called scientists must emulate Clinton and parse everything to death and ignore the incredible totality of the universe. And that He would condescend to live on our level and suffer to be so cruelly slaughtered is almost beyond belief. But it is that belief that opens the world of eternity to us.

  12. BaconNeggs says:

    >>I have faith in God. Beyond that, I don’t know.<<

    Now that, is perfectly logical.

    Both God or Creation have missing pieces in their puzzle and both require a certain degree of "chicken or egg" faith.

  13. notamobster says:

    In case anyone’s wondering where BNe came up with that, I posted it and deleted it immediately. He apparently saw it in the few seconds it was up.

    I have a general sense of what the deal is, and absolute faith that I’ll be exactly where I need to be, when I need to be there. I feel the draw, but my mind says no to universal vicarious atonement. I was hoping that my delete would keep me out of the discussion. Apparently not.

  14. Locke n Load says:

    Have no fear Nota, I can cover yer ass here by saying something even more embarrassing.

    Resurrection? I’m still struggling with the definition of Divine. I’m 100% convinced that power exists. Its spoken to me several times, but wrapping my head around its origin and purpose, thats another matter.

    Great post RD.

    • Ray Davies says:

      We’ve missed you L&L. When you get a chance update us on your happenings.

      Happy Easter to all my friends here

  15. notamobster says:

    It wasn’t embarrassment.

    My life is an open book. You folks know all there is to know about me, now…

    Former muslim. Former liberal apologist. Former truther. All I am and all I hope to be these days, is an honorable man, a good father, and a better husband.

    I was just hoping to stay out of it. Below is a link to last year’s Easter discussion. The comments section is well worth the read to those who haven’t read it. There is a calm and rational debate on the issue at hand. Again, I love this site and the minds it brings together.

    My views and journey are well-explained in the link below.

    http://therealrevo.com/blog/?p=24447#comments

  16. James says:

    When realization of U.S. economic collapse becomes widespread, churches will fill.

  17. AW Mens says:

    Great post RD.
    Hope everyone has a wonderful Easter!

  18. MadBrad says:

    Just getting back from Church I open up the Revo, see these comments and I can’t help but get misty eyed. The past two Resurrection Sundays I have had a desire to do something here that could give glory to God but that really wasn’t needed. God gave that task to a non-believer last Easter and that very same person came back this year to just lay it right out, only this time he did it as a Christian. Praise God, Hallelujah. All of the Kingdom of Heaven rejoices when one who is lost finds the way, the truth and the life.

    Among our esteemed non-believers I see a common thread. I feel very certain that God is going to do something very special in your lives beyond that which he does for you every day. He is going to lead you to the great revelation. He has crafted you to your task. You will get your commission. It’s going to happen for you. Knowing the joy of the revelation that is ahead of you and what you all will do with it just makes me want to stand up, dance and sing.

    Oh Death, where is thy sting?

  19. Locke n Load says:

    I’m waiting for this CD to be released but they’ve released a few clips and “I saw the Light” is getting play on XM. Considering the day, this is one you’re gonna like Brad. Actually, I can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t like it. The Blind Boys are amazing and hank, well Hank is Hank.

    I’ll try and get it downloaded before the fiesta

  20. His Servant says:

    Great post, congratulations RD! Praise God for the faith he has given you and for accepting Jesus as your Savior. I’m pleased that I can call you a brother in Christ! God Bless you and all of the brothers and sisters on the Real Revo.

  21. MadBrad says:

    I love the Blind Boys of Alabama. I now that CD has got to kick some ass!

  22. slinger says:

    This quote that I saw on The Patriot Post is quite fitting for a Real Revo audience:

    “I still can’t help wondering how we can explain away what to me is the greatest miracle of all and which is recorded in history. No one denies there was such a man, that he lived and that he was put to death by crucifixion. Where … is the miracle I spoke of? Well consider this and let your imagination translate the story into our own time — possibly to your own home town. A young man whose father is a carpenter grows up working in his father’s shop. One day he puts down his tools and walks out of his father’s shop. He starts preaching on street corners and in the nearby countryside, walking from place to place, preaching all the while, even though he is not an ordained minister. He never gets farther than an area perhaps 100 miles wide at the most. He does this for three years. Then he is arrested, tried and convicted. There is no court of appeal, so he is executed at age 33 along with two common thieves. Those in charge of his execution roll dice to see who gets his clothing — the only possessions he has. His family cannot afford a burial place for him so he is interred in a borrowed tomb. End of story? No, this uneducated, property-less young man has, for 2,000 years, had a greater effect on the world than all the rulers, kings, emperors; all the conquerors, generals and admirals, all the scholars, scientists and philosophers who have ever lived — all of them put together. How do we explain that — unless He really was what He said He was?” –President Ronald Reagan

    The very specific messianic prophecies of Isaiah were fulfilled in Jesus Christ down to the most minute detail. Isaiah has been proven to have been written hundreds of years before Christ.

    The disciples of Jesus were witness to His resurrection. Would you give your life for a known lie? If the resurrection was a lie than that is exactly what they did.

  23. Locke n Load says:

    Outstanding Slinger. Thanks for that.

    One of the things about the story of Christ that has always bugged me is the first 30 years. Where the hell was he? Why all of a sudden the preaching? Seems a baby introduced into the world like he was might have found his purpose a little sooner,lol. I wonder if Joseph ever wondered if the boy was a bit of an underachiever? Yes, I jest, but the question I’m asking isn’t so much so.

    I’ve always regarded the Old Testament as Gods will for the mankind told in parables while the New Testament was his specific intent for each man. Maybe thats been wrong. Then again anyone that tries to tell me the Ark isn’t a parable better be prepared to answer some pretty obvious questions. That said, why would all of those instructions for Salvation have to come in a three yr span?

  24. John B. says:

    Locke: Read some of Andrew Snelling’s work. He is a geologist with some good theories about the flood. Great post R.D.!

  25. Locke n Load says:

    I have no problem believing there could have been cataclysmic regional floods but if you try and tell me that every living thing ON EARTH that survived was on that Ark…

  26. R.D. Walker says:

    I don’t believe in a world wide flood. I don’t believe all species were saved on an ark. I don’t believe the earth was created in seven days. I don’t believe Adam and Eve had no ancestors. I don’t believe the universe is 6,000 years old. I never will believe any of that. In fact, I believe in the literal untruth of all of the above. None of this has any impact on what I wrote in the original post.

    Thanks to all for the kind words regarding the post.

  27. Locke n Load says:

    Like I said above, I try and view the two books as different approaches and messages. And your post doesn’t even need to reference my distraction 🙂 Faith is, as you said, a gift. I don’t believe it requires you to be blind either.

  28. R.D. Walker says:

    I was pretty much agreeing with you Locke, not beating you up.

  29. Locke n Load says:

    hehehe, duh 🙂

  30. Locke n Load says:

    Still, wtf happened to the first 30 years??? I’ve spent a lot of time listening to Catholic Radio and NEVER has that been brought up. Just one of those inane nagging questions..

  31. R.D. Walker says:

    Beats me. Does it matter?

  32. Locke n Load says:

    Ultimately no, unless he was at some crazy “miracle school” or learning to perform heretofore unheard of magic 🙂

  33. MadBrad says:

    I remember having a discussion with some Muslims in Prison that goes along some of what is being discussed here. They started making fun of the story of Jonah being swallowed by a whale, carried some place and vomited out in the surf. I just said to them; “God is God, right? There is but one God who is the creator of the Cosmos and all that dwells within it, right? Is there some part of your Faith that tells you that there are things that God is incapable of”?

  34. R.D. Walker says:

    Yeah, Locke, that would be a big deal. I doubt that a fifth canonical gospel – the Gospel of Houdini – is forthcoming, however.

  35. Locke n Load says:

    Brad- Ha! nice retort. Besides, I thought Islam was supposed to recognise Jesus as a Prophet. Wouldn’t the fact that he was Jewish sort of fuck up all their supposed respect for what made him Christ?

    RD- the Gospels of Houdini…hmmm. I dunno, sure would explain the walking on water bit 🙂

  36. John B. says:

    I get hung up on II Timothy 3:16. To me, if the Bible presents it as an actual occurance, then I give it the benefit of the doubt. Just my 2 cents worth. The path to Heaven runs through Jesus not Noah though.

  37. R.D. Walker says:

    “And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the hat and from it pulled a rabbit which became many and gave the rabbits to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude.”

  38. MadBrad says:

    As for the 30 year thing L&L, I’m betting a Jewish Scholar or Rabbi could tell us more about that. It may have been a cultural thing that until a man reached a certain age he wouldn’t be taken seriously. Yes, the Rabbis marveled at Jesus as a child when he was teaching in the Temple. He was an astonishment to them, a marvel and nothing more. Mary took him away and warned him that he could get in trouble for doing stuff like that. Well, he sure did get in trouble for that, just like his Mother warned him about.

    Jesus had his business to do and he did it. He did it right on time too, you can believe that. After watching The Passion of the Christ you have to wonder if it took 33 years to let him put on enough muscle to have enough left to make it up the hill to get crucified after the beating he got from the Roman Soldiers. I wouldn’t have made it through the beating at any point in my life.

  39. John B. says:

    Wow! I type way too slow to keep up with you guys. Thanks for the great blog.

  40. Locke n Load says:

    I’m pretty sure Matthew 17:24-27 is David Copperfield territory.
    Still, if anyone knows where to find those fish full of money….

  41. MadBrad says:

    I go along with John B. By the way, the man who raised me, a Master Mason 32nd Degree, Sunday School Teacher, Marine, Little League Coach and Father for the Fatherless, his name was John B. Sloan. Sometimes the stuff you say gives me chills.

    I think that part of the reason Jesus Christ had to come to the Earth in the flesh and do the things he did is exactly because of some of the stuff we have going on in the comments. All those Old Testament stories, what are we to make of some of them? The Old Testament makes up 85% of the Holy Bible. It ISN’T irrelevant.

    The number of times Israel screwed up and betrayed their covenant with God illustrates how there had to be another covenant. The Law was dead. There had to be something more or the human race would have been doomed.

  42. MadBrad says:

    How about fish full of Cocaine that can be converted into money? Those things DO happen to this day!

  43. Locke n Load says:

    Jesus left the synagogue and went to the home of Simon. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Jesus to help her. So he bent over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her. She got up at once and began to wait on them.
    – Luke 4:38-39

    See, maybe there IS a Book of Houdini. Clearly mother in laws DON’T wait on their son in laws.

  44. notamobster says:

    Locke, they do not accept that he was a Jew. He was a muslim sent to bring the Jews back to the right way of believing… They also don’t accept that he died “he died not, nor was he crucified”.

    Brad: They must’ve been Nation Of Islam ™ because Jonah is a prophet in Islam…”dhul nun” (the one of the whale).

  45. R.D. Walker says:

    “The Old Testament makes up 85% of the Holy Bible. It ISN’T irrelevant.”

    It can be both relevant and allegorical you know.

  46. Locke n Load says:

    Well how in the hell can they NOT accept he was a Jew? And he didn’t die? Huh? Maybe Islam goes with the whole Mormon thing about him running off to the Americas

  47. Locke n Load says:

    “The Old Testament makes up 85% of the Holy Bible. It ISN’T irrelevant.”

    I find nothing irrelevant in good parables. It doesn’t necessarily follow that you think the message is faulty if you think the story isn’t factual.

  48. notamobster says:

    Nope.

    The qur’an says that he did not die, nor was he crucified…but was taken up to heaven and will return to bring justice back to the world and will die a human death of old age after setting the world right. As for the Jew thing, islam holds that all of the prophets were muslim (one who submits) and followed the same teachings that muhammad brought – peace…. 🙂

    The idea being that all had the same message from the beginning but it got corrupted a few times and folks had to be put in check. The Torah, the Injil (Gospel) and the qur’an. Apparently, a child-raping wife-beater was the last, best hope for mankind.

  49. Locke n Load says:

    Damn, RD beat me to that. Never mind.
    Point is Brad, the stories in Pt 1 don’t require faith in my understanding, just understanding in my faith.

  50. R.D. Walker says:

    Orwell’s Animal Farm is incredibly relevant and brilliant too. Well, unless you take it as a literal written account of a case in which English livestock take over a farm. Do that and it pretty much loses its relevancy.

  51. Locke n Load says:

    Do that and it pretty much loses its relevancy.

    Hell no. Then it would become a treatise on why me MUST eat bacon!

  52. Reaper says:

    Words from the heart expressing the beliefs and faith of the mind. . . simply beautiful. Thanks.
    Btw, is this a weird place to ask how one could possibly buy a round on your Revo Fiesta?

  53. notamobster says:

    Show up and you can buy all the rounds… 😎

  54. R.D. Walker says:

    Of course you are welcome Reaper. Check the email under which you post.

  55. Reaper says:

    “buy all the rounds”- can I really!

  56. MadBrad says:

    This is one of my favorite publications to read on Resurrection Sunday. I do it every year. He is risen!

  57. Rich says:

    Wonderful Post RD – and may you and yours all have a faith filled and sacred Easter. Also to all here at the Revo.

    Now, RD I completely get what you mean when you speak of a rapid transformation to faith. But unlike you, mine came as I slept.

    I had been trying to read a book by Josh McDowell called “More Than a Carpenter.” For some reason I just couldn’t get into the book. I also found annoying the numerous Biblical quotes and citations throughout its text. These were rarely quoted in full and thus were fairly short. Nonetheless, I found them annoying. After struggling, with growing annoyance, to read the book and getting through only a few pages I thunked the book down and went to sleep.

    When I went to sleep I was mildly pro-choice, a pretty modernistic liberal, not into the Bible or its truths at all, had trouble with Jesus, God, creation, miracles, the resurrection, etc. If asked I would have said I believe in God, but if you tried to push me much past that generalization, I would have quickly shied away.

    As I recall that night’s sleep was no different than any other. I recall no wonders or dreams. I just had a decent nights’ sleep.

    But when I awoke, I knew that somehow interiorly all that I was when I went to sleep was no more.

    I woke up with the gift of faith. I picked up “More Than A Carpenter” again, and devoured it – no problem with the Biblical quotes and citations. In fact I found I enjoyed their presence and essence.

    I also found I bought into the entirety of the Biblical story: God; creation; Jesus; His suffering; His resurrection; His living presence in my life THEN, and now; miracles, Angels; and pretty much the whole enchilada. Lastly, I found I was no longer a modernistic liberal. I knew that abortion was evil, as are so many other sins of this modern age – feminism, gay marriage, etc.

    Can I explain the above occurrence? Absolutely not. I just know it happened.

    And as to the new beliefs brought on by my gift of faith, I could not then, of course, explain them. Some of those things, I think, are simply not subject to human understanding or explanation. But as time went on, and I read more, and thanks to a few genuine mystical experiences, I began to understand more and more, and logic came along to buttress the faith I was given. And that is, I think, all to the good.

    But no matter how far I have strayed from what I think God would desire for my life, and I have, He has never rescinded that gift of faith. And for that I am desperately and deeply grateful.

    • R.D. Walker says:

      That gave me tingles all over! Both because it is a great story and because I have found your experience is exactly how it works. Faith is a gift of the Holy Spirit. Our role in it seems to be to accept it or reject it and nothing else. I can’t even tell you when I was given faith. It just happened.

      Happy Easter.

      • Rich says:

        Thank you RD. It was all mysterious, miraculous, utterly undeserved, and received with a sense of awe that remains with me NOW as I type this. It is nice to know I am not alone in this experience.

    • MadBrad says:

      Thank you for sharing that story. It is one that I will share with others. What a dramatic change to go to sleep seeking the Truth and then awakening to find that the Truth had become part of you. He surely keeps his promises. Thank you for sharing this highly inspirational act of Love and Grace.

      I go back and read this publication every year. It reminds me once again that the Real Revo serves a much higher purpose than providing commentary on recent events. Because of the Love of the Lord Jesus Christ we have something to talk about that really matters, that can have an eternal impact on those around us. That is something that makes me know that this is all very much worthwhile.

      Let us carry His Love with us everywhere. Let us share His Gospel with all who will take the time to receive it. Let’s shine a light unto the path of the lost so that they may begin to seek and by His promises, find.

      He is risen!

      • Rich says:

        Thank you MadBrad. If there is good to be had from what I wrote, God shall bring it forth. He so often brings flowers from manure … He’s a pretty sly guy that way. Always meeting us where we are, and speaking to us through people and Christinstances (not coincidences) that we are ready to hear – even when we don’t know it. Sometimes He does the big time miraculous. But usually He works softly and individually. Utterly marvelous … just utterly marvelous.