The Urantia Book -- Part IV. The Life And
Teachings Of Jesus
PAPER 191: Section 5.
Second Appearance To The Apostles
Thomas spent a lonesome week alone with himself in the hills around about Olivet.
During this time he saw only those at Simon's house and John Mark. It was about
nine o'clock on Saturday, April 15, when the two apostles found him and took
him back with them to their rendezvous at the Mark home. The next day Thomas
listened to the telling of the stories of the Master's various appearances,
but he steadfastly refused to believe. He maintained that Peter had enthused
them into thinking they had seen the Master. Nathaniel reasoned with him, but
it did no good. There was an emotional stubbornness associated with his customary
doubtfulness, and this state of mind, coupled with his chagrin at having run
away from them, conspired to create a situation of isolation which even Thomas
himself did not fully understand. He had withdrawn from his fellows, he had
gone his own way, and now, even when he was back among them, he unconsciously
tended to assume an attitude of disagreement. He was slow to surrender; he disliked
to give in. Without intending it, he really enjoyed the attention paid him;
he derived unconscious satisfaction from the efforts of all his fellows to convince
and convert him. He had missed them for a full week, and he obtained considerable
pleasure from their persistent attentions.
They were having their evening meal a little after six o'clock, with Peter sitting
on one side of Thomas and Nathaniel on the other, when the doubting apostle
said: "I will not believe unless I see the Master with my own eyes and put my
finger in the mark of the nails." As they thus sat at supper, and while the
doors were securely shut and barred, the morontia Master suddenly appeared inside
the curvature of the table and, standing directly in front of Thomas, said:
"Peace be upon you. For a full week have I tarried that I might appear again
when you were all present to hear once more the commission to go into all the
world and preach this gospel of the kingdom. Again I tell you: As the Father
sent me into the world, so send I you. As I have revealed the Father, so shall
you reveal the divine love, not merely with words, but in your daily living.
I send you forth, not to love the souls of men, but rather to love men.
You are not merely to proclaim the joys of heaven but also to exhibit in your
daily experience these spirit realities of the divine life since you already
have eternal life, as the gift of God, through faith. When you have faith, when
power from on high, the Spirit of Truth, has come upon you, you will not hide
your light here behind closed doors; you will make known the love and the mercy
of God to all mankind. Through fear you now flee from the facts of a disagreeable
experience, but when you shall have been baptized with the Spirit of Truth,
you will bravely and joyously go forth to meet the new experiences of proclaiming
the good news of eternal life in the kingdom of God. You may tarry here and
in Galilee for a short season while you recover from the shock of the transition
from the false security of the authority of traditionalism to the new order
of the authority of facts, truth, and faith in the supreme realities of living
experience. Your mission to the world is founded on the fact that I lived a
God-revealing life among you; on the truth that you and all other men are the
sons of God; and it shall consist in the life which you will live among men
-- the actual and living experience of loving men and serving them, even as
I have loved and served you. Let faith reveal your light to the world; let the
revelation of truth open the eyes blinded by tradition; let your loving service
effectually destroy the prejudice engendered by ignorance. By so drawing close
to your fellow men in understanding sympathy and with unselfish devotion, you
will lead them into a saving knowledge of the Father's love. The Jews have extolled
goodness; the Greeks have exalted beauty; the Hindus preach devotion; the faraway
ascetics teach reverence; the Romans demand loyalty; but I require of my disciples
life, even a life of loving service for your brothers in the flesh."
When the Master had so spoken, he looked down into the face of Thomas and said:
"And you, Thomas, who said you would not believe unless you could see me and
put your finger in the nail marks of my hands, have now beheld me and heard
my words; and though you see no nail marks on my hands, since I am raised in
the form that you also shall have when you depart from this world, what will
you say to your brethren? You will acknowledge the truth, for already in your
heart you had begun to believe even when you so stoutly asserted your unbelief.
Your doubts, Thomas, always most stubbornly assert themselves just as they are
about to crumble. Thomas, I bid you be not faithless but believing -- and I
know you will believe, even with a whole heart."
When Thomas heard these words, he fell on his knees before the morontia Master
and exclaimed, "I believe! My Lord and my Master!" Then said Jesus to Thomas:
"You have believed, Thomas, because you have really seen and heard me. Blessed
are those in the ages to come who will believe even though they have not seen
with the eye of flesh nor heard with the mortal ear."
And then, as the Master's form moved over near the head of the table, he addressed
them all, saying: "And now go all of you to Galilee, where I will presently
appear to you." After he said this, he vanished from their sight.
The eleven apostles were now fully convinced that Jesus had risen from the
dead, and very early the next morning, before the break of day, they started
out for Galilee.