By Kelly Wise Valdes

Thomas Didymus, from Galilee, was reported to be with Jesus of Nazareth at the tomb of a local believer, Lazarus. It has been reported that Jesus was summoned to the home of Lazarus in Bethany, where Lazarus was suffering from an unknown but deadly illness. Jesus traveled to Bethany with Thomas, but upon arrival they were informed that Lazarus had passed away four days earlier.

Sources close to Jesus claim that the other disciples tried to stop Jesus from going to Bethany because of the danger in the area and the possibility that Jesus could be detained and executed. However, Thomas was willing to go and led the charge to make the trip to Bethany. “Let us also go, that we may die with Him,” said Thomas.

Upon arrival at the tomb of Lazarus, witnesses say that Jesus asked the group of mourners to roll the stone away from the entrance to the tomb and then He said a prayer. After the prayer, Lazarus reportedly exited the tomb still wrapped in his grave-cloths. It was been discovered that several of the bystanders reported the event to the religious authorities in Jerusalem. However, Thomas remained clear that Jesus performed a miracle and it should confirm again that He is the Messiah.

Although Thomas had earned the nickname “Doubting Thomas,” friends and relatives close to him describe him as a man of devotion and great faith. Even John the disciple said that Thomas “was a man of courage who often asked questions that the rest of the disciples may have been thinking but unwilling to voice.”

One of the most poignant questions that Thomas asked of Jesus was, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Although the local media has characterized Thomas as an intense pessimist, his friends, family and other disciples confirm that Thomas is a full believer in Christ and continues to follow Jesus after witnessing the miracle of Lazarus.

******Jesus inspired 12 ordinary men to leave their old lives behind and become followers of Him. Among these new followers were fishermen, a tax collector and a revolutionary. The Gospels record the failings, struggles and doubts of these twelve men who followed Jesus. This series will document one of the disciples each month in a fun way in order to learn more about how God turned each man from ordinary to extraordinary.******

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Kelly Wise Valdes
Kelly Wise Valdes has been writing for the Osprey Observer since 2008. She graduated in 1989 from Florida Southern College with a B.S. in Communications and enjoys writing and traveling. She currently resides in northern Hillsborough County with her husband, David. When not traveling and writing, Kelly and her husband enjoy spending time with their five grown children (as well as their grandchildren) that still keep them very busy.