Tagged: doubt

Twins!


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John 20.19-end

There’s nothing worse than being given a nickname you don’t like – especially if you really don’t deserve it.

So I’ve always felt rather sorry for poor old Thomas. Everyone has heard of ‘doubting Thomas’ – even people who have no idea who he was other than that he was a Thomas who doubted.

And there are two questions I’ve always had about Thomas.

Why on earth did poor Thomas get his nickname? Because it seems to me he doesn’t deserve it.

And who was his twin brother? Or sister? 

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Where is your faith?


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Luke 8.22-25

Being caught in a storm at sea is no laughing matter. I speak from bitter experience. When I was doing my Church Army Training, more years ago than I am prepared to admit to, I spent, as one of my placements, six weeks working with the chaplaincy team at H.M.S. Collingwood. H.M.S. Collingwood is a training ship – the biggest in the navy – and as such is not a ship at all but a land base.

While I was there I had the opportunity to join the chaplain on H.M.S. Antrim, a guided missile destroyer, and spend two days at sea while the ship went out for gunnery practice. What an opportunity – and it should have been a wonderful experience.

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The twin called Twin


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John 20.19-31

There’s nothing worse than being given a nickname you don’t like – especially if you really don’t deserve it.

So I’ve always felt rather sorry for poor old Thomas. Everyone has heard of ‘doubting Thomas’ – even people who have no idea who he was other than that he was a Thomas who doubted.

And there are two questions I’ve always had about Thomas.

Why on earth did poor Thomas get his nickname? Because it seems to me he doesn’t deserve it.

And who was his twin brother? Or sister? 

Well, let’s deal with that first question – why on earth did poor Thomas get his nickname? 

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Open the door!


John 20.19-end

As a child I was hopeless at sport – sport was simply not my thing. The best I ever managed at secondary school was the report in my first year where the sports master had written for Gym: He has absolutely no aptitude for this subject but he tries his best. And it wasn’t helped by the fact that my sister was a superb athlete who ran for the county! People always assumed that I would be able to run as fast as my sister!

But I was the one nobody wanted on their team. When I was at primary school we used that iniquitous system of two people being chosen as captains for football, and then they picked their teams. And of course, when it came to choosing who was going to be in your football team it was never going to be me, because I couldn’t play an even half-decent game of football if my life depended on it. I always knew that I wouldn’t get picked but that didn’t make it any easier.

There is nothing worse than being left out.

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Open the door!


16442308 - wooden door in a mediterranean castle

John 20.19-end

The man is on trial for murder. The jurors have retreated to the jury room where they are shut in until they reach a verdict. The case for finding him guilty seems overwhelming – and, in fact almost all of the jury are at the outset convinced that finding him guilty is the only option. But one of the jurors is not convinced. He has doubts. And he does his best to persuade the other jurors that they have got it all wrong, that a critical view of the evidence can only result in finding him not guilty.

The play “Twelve Angry Men” by Reginald Rose, made into a famous film with Henry Fonda, is a story of one man who sees things differently and who isn’t about to be persuaded otherwise by the other people in the group. Continue reading

What I said this week – Thomas Sunday


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This week, the Sunday following Easter Day, has us thinking about Thomas the doubting disciple. Here’s my sermon.

John 20.19-end

As a child I was hopeless at sport – sport was simply not my thing. The best I ever managed at secondary school was the report in my first year where the sports master had written for Gym: He has absolutely no aptitude for this subject but he tries his best. I was the one nobody wanted on their team. When I was at primary school we used that iniquitous system of two people being chosen as captains for football, and then they picked their teams. And of course, when it came to choosing who was going to be in your football team it was never going to be me, because I couldn’t play an even half-decent game of football if my life depended on it. I always knew that I wouldn’t get picked but that didn’t make it any easier.

There is nothing worse than being left out. Continue reading