Click To Go Home
Sermons of A Pastor-Teacher
d.e. buffaloe

Nail Prints In His Hands

 

(John 20:24-29 KJV) "But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus<meaning "a twin">, was not with them when Jesus came. {25} The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print< tupos {pronounced = too’-pos} the mark of a stroke or blow, print, something formed by a blow or impression, something constructed as a memorial, a remembrance or memorial> of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe. {26} And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. {27} Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. {28} And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God. {29} Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed."

Introduction

Many have preached on this text, and in so doing have quickly condemned Thomas for doubting the resurrection of our Lord Jesus. How could he not believe, on hearing the testimony of his brothers in service. We call him "Doubting Thomas", and many children have been branded with this unscriptural title when they doubted something that a friend or a loved one told them. How quickly we forget that Thomas was not the only one who doubted.

(Mark 16:11-14 KJV) "And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not. {12} After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country. {13} And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them. {14} Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen."

Mary as well as a number of other women (Those who came were Mary Magdalene, Mat 28:1; Joh 20:1; Mary the mother of James and Joses, Mat 28:1; Luk 24:10; Mar 15:40; Salome, the wife of Zebedee, and mother of James and John, compare Mat 27:56; Mar 15:40; Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, compare Luk 24:10; Luk 8:3; and certain others not specified, Luk 24:1, Luk 24:10.) came to the tomb to see Jesus. Mary reported that she saw the resurrected Jesus to the other disciples, but they failed to believe. Jesus Christ appeared after His resurrection (Luke 24:31-33) to two others on the Road to Emmaus who, when they told the eleven Disciples they still refused to believe. Jesus, our Mark text tells us, "upbraided {the disciples} with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen". We need no more brand Thomas as Doubting Thomas than we need to brand every Disciple Doubting Peter or Doubting James. All who were present with Jesus while He walked and ministered on this earth doubted His resurrection. All who saw Him hanging on that tree, bleeding, torn from head to toe, dying standing up doubted that He yet lived.

We all doubt unless God reveals Himself to us. We who are saved are saved because, at one point in time, Jesus revealed Himself to your heart. Had a mere man or a mere woman revealed His resurrection to you, you would still yet be dead in your sins. When others ran and told their friends that Jesus was alive, that they had seen Him with the print of the nails on His feet and on His hands, the disciples refused to believe. Surely this was imagination. Surely they dreamed such a thing. But when Jesus walked into their midst, and showed each disciple personally and intimately the print of the nails - then they believed.

My prayer is that the precious Holy Spirit of God will open your hearts and minds. That you will see the nail prints today that our Savior shows you, and in seeing these nail prints you will believe.

1. The Nail Prints Remind Us That God Is Just

Thomas said:

(John 20:25) ... "Except I shall see in his hands the print< tupos {pronounced = too’POs} the mark of a stroke or blow, print, something formed by a blow or impression, something constructed as a memorial, a remembrance or memorial> of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe."

This beloved disciple uses an interesting word when he challenges the resurrection of Christ - He uses the word tupos {pronounced = too’POs}. Basically what Thomas is saying is "I will not believe unless I see the impression or imprint of the nails in His hands". Tupos means an image that remains when the original is impressed into something. Thomas saw Jesus hanging on that Cross, saw Him as He labored to breath, and knew that Jesus would have those distinctive marks on His hands. The nails left an impression on the Body of our Savior. The nails left us something to remember as we look at Jesus. The Bible says:

(Jude 1:5-7 KJV) "I will therefore put you in remembrance,<tupos> though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. {6} And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. {7} Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire."

The nail prints are a remembrance, a reminder to us that our God is a just God. So many people have forgotten this truth today. We read the Scripture that states:

(1 John 4:8 KJV) "He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."

It is true that God is love, but God is also just. God cannot abide sin, He cannot tolerate sin, sin sickens God. We are warned of the holiness of God by the Prophet Isaiah who looked into Heaven and saw:

(Isaiah 6:1-5 KJV) "... also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. {2} Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. {3} And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. {4} And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. {5} Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts."

Our God is holy, holy, holy! Our God will have nothing to do with sin, nor with sinfulness. He created Man and Woman perfect and without sin in the Garden. He told them they could eat of any tree but one. He warned them that, on the day that they disobeyed His order, on that day they would surely die.

(Genesis 2:17 KJV) "But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."<literally moth tamuth {pronounced mooth tahmooth}, dying thou shalt surely die >

Perhaps Adam and Eve thought, like many today, that "God is too good" to punish them. Many in our era believe that God just loves us too much to send us to a Lake of Fire. God is love - but God is also just. Our God never lies, nor does He oscillate in thought or being. He promised Adam that disobedience would be rewarded with death. "Dying thou shalt surely die". That happened that very day. The Bible says:

(Romans 5:12 KJV) "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:"

God keeps His Word. Adam introduced sin into the world, sin and its consequences ... death. Adam died spiritually the day that he disobeyed God, and because he died spiritually he brought physical death on himself and all his descendants. "Dying thou shalt surely die". It doesn't matter how good you are, how many good works you do, or even if you're a member of a church or a volunteer at some wonderful charity. Because we are Adam's seed - because we come from a source of spiritual death - we are born into this life spiritually dead and physically dying. "Dying thou shalt surely die".

Sin entered into the world by Adam's disobedience. Death, both physical as well as spiritual, passed on all men, all women, all children. Sin is universal. All are in its grasp. And God is just and holy, holy, holy. Many today teach liberalism, that God - since He is love - will overlook sin. Here is God's answer:

(Malachi 2:17 KJV) "Ye have wearied the LORD with your words. Yet ye say, Wherein have we wearied him? When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and he delighteth in them; or, Where is the God of judgment?"

Our God is a God of judgment. Our God is a God of justice and holiness. The nail prints in Jesus' hands remind us That God is just, and demands payment for sin. If you believe that you are good enough to get into Heaven by your own works, look at the nail prints. If you believe that God will overlook your estate, look at the nail prints. If you believe that your works will gain you entrance - that your rituals, your baptism, your religion will get you into Heaven, look at the nail prints. Our precious Jesus was led up a dusty road to a garbage dump called Golgoltha. There with two other thieves who well deserved their punishment, Jesus was laid down and stretched out. His hands and feet were roughly handled as the crowd mocked Him, making fun of our Lord. Perhaps a Roman soldier, clad in leather armor, stood on his wrist while the nails were pounded in. As the Scripture says:

(Psalms 22:16-18 KJV) "For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have enclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet. {17} I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me. {18} They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture."

The nail prints remind us that Jesus hung on that Cross, and:

(Mark 15:33-34 KJV) "... when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. {34} And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"

Darkness fell for sin was poured out on Christ. Darkness fell because God is just and we are unjust. Darkness fell because no one else could pay the penalty. Darkness fell because:

(2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV) ".... he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."

Darkness fell because, for the first time in all of eternity, God the Father and God the Spirit turned away from God the Son. The shock to His system caused Jesus to cry out, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?". Jesus knew why, but the shock caused Him to cry out. I cannot imagine what He went for for our salvation. Jesus endured separation from both Father and Spirit so that we would not have to be separated from God in the Lake of Fire.

The nail prints remind us that God is just, and we are the sons of God by faith alone in the finished work of Christ alone. The nail prints remind us that God will not look the other way on Judgment Day. Unless you accept the pardon that Jesus paid for in His own body on the tree, unless you believe in Him for salvation, unless you rely on His finished work - the work that left the nail prints in His hands - then you have no assurance of salvation.

The nail prints remind us that our works are not good enough to get us into Heaven. As the Bible says:

(John 6:29 KJV) "... This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent."

2. The Nail Prints Remind Us That God Supplies

(John 20:26-27) "... And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. {27} Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing."

The nail prints remind us that God our Father supplies our every need. Our most basic need is salvation of our souls, and God has provided that through the precious Blood of Christ:

(1 Peter 1:18-19 KJV) "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; {19} But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:"

This is a wonderful truth. But if you have accepted Jesus Christ as Savior then you still need To look at the nail prints every single day. The nail prints are a promise from Jesus to us that our God provides our every need. Hear this, Beloved of God:

(Romans 8:31-32 KJV) "What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? {32} He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?"

If God be for us, who can be against us? If God the Father took His only Begotten Son and, knowing how much He loves the Son, delivered Him up to the Cross for us - then "how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?". God did the most, the MOST for you at the Cross of Calvary. Shall He now, having put the Beloved under the terrible weight of judgment for us, shall He forsake us now? No, no, a thousand times, no!

It is a truth that this life is hard. Many are sick. Many have lost loved ones. We are weighed down with trials and tribulations. But Beloved, remember the nail prints. The Apostle Paul remembered the nail prints, and these nail prints helped him in the darkest of hours. It is written:

(2 Corinthians 4:5-10 KJV) "For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake. {6} For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. {7} But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. {8} We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; {9} Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; {10} Always bearing about in the body the dying <we see the nail prints> of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body."

The nail prints are what Paul kept in mind at all times. He remembered what Jesus did for him. When cast into prison, he saw the nail prints. When beaten with a rod, he saw the nail prints. Paul said:

(2 Corinthians 11:24-27 KJV) "Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. {25} Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; {26} In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; {27} In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness."

Paul suffered terribly for the faith, yet he kept remembering the nail prints. He kept bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, and knew that, even when it was darkest, it was never hopeless. Christ bore the Cross for our salvation - the Father gave the Son to justice for us. Shall He now abandon us, having paid such a terrible price?

In the midst of your suffering - and God is aware of your suffering - remember the nail prints. The work that God wrought through the curse of the Cross, He will not abandon that work. If you have accepted Jesus Christ as Savior, those nail prints are what purchased your redemption. Those nail prints remind us that:

(Ephesians 2:18-22 KJV) "For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. {19} Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; {20} And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; {21} In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: {22} In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."

The nail prints remind us that we who have believed on Him are no longer estranged from God. God has provided so much for us at he Cross - shall He not now provide for us as we walk in Him? Why should we worry about the things of this world? Why not approach your Heavenly Father in prayer, and ask Him for provision. We are sons and daughters of God, kings and priests unto God .... we must

(1 Peter 5:6-7 KJV) "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: {7} Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you."

3. The Nail Prints Remind Us Who We Serve

(John 20:27b-28) "... be not faithless, but believing. {28} And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God."

When you look at my hands you will see scars and marks a plenty - yet you will not see nail prints in my hands. If you look at your neighbor's hands you may see hands wrinkled and worn with time. Perhaps they, too, will be scarred from the trials of this life. The scars and marks we have on our hands are the result of disobedience. Had Adam not fallen, thorns and thistles would not have come into this world. The marks we bear are marks of humanity. We have human, marked, pocked, wrinkled hands.

But when we look at the hands of Christ, we see the nail prints. These are not the result of disobedience, but the result of obedience. He is truly our Lord and our God. The song says:

I serve a RISEN SAVIOR, He's in the world today;

I KNOW that He is living, whatever men may say;

I SEE HIS HAND of mercy, I hear His voice of cheer;

And just the time I need Him, He's always near!

Before the terrible night that our Jesus died for us, He told Thomas and all the disciples that He would have to go and prepare a place for us. Thomas questioned Jesus, wanting to know where our Lord was going to go.

(John 14:5-7 KJV) "Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? {6} Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. {7} If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him."

Jesus said "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me". If at some point in your life you reached out and, by faith, grabbed hold of that nail scarred hand, then death has no hold on you. The Apostle Paul was confident when he said:

(2 Corinthians 5:6-8 KJV) "Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: {7} (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) {8} We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord."

Because Jesus lives, and we have believed in Him, we will live forever. It is so sad that the rich man cried out to Abraham, that Lazarus might dip just a finger into water and quench is thirst (Luke 16:24). Had the rich man only grabbed hold of the hand of Jesus he would have avoided judgment, and entered eternal life:

(John 7:37-38 KJV) "In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. {38} He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water."

 

 
Preached To The Saints At Rock Hill Baptist Church, Lexington, Tennessee, On July 13, 2003

Introduction

(Mark 16:11-14 KJV) "And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not. {12} After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country. {13} And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them. {14} Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen."

Those who came were Mary Magdalene, Mat 28:1; Joh 20:1; Mary the mother of James and Joses, Mat 28:1; Luk 24:10; Mar 15:40; Salome, the wife of Zebedee, and mother of James and John, compare Mat 27:56; Mar 15:40; Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, compare Luk 24:10; Luk 8:3; and certain others not specified, Luk 24:1, Luk 24:10.)

1. The Nail Prints Remind Us That God Is Just

(John 20:25) ... "Except I shall see in his hands the print< tupos {pronounced = too’-pos} the mark of a stroke or blow, print, something formed by a blow or impression, something constructed as a memorial, a remembrance or memorial> of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe."

(Jude 1:5-7 KJV) "I will therefore put you in remembrance,<tupos> though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. {6} And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. {7} Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire."

(1 John 4:8 KJV) "He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."

(Isaiah 6:1-5 KJV) "... also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. {2} Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. {3} And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. {4} And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. {5} Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts."

(Genesis 2:17 KJV) "But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."<literally moth tamuth {pronounced mooth tahmooth}, dying thou shalt surely die >

(Romans 5:12 KJV) "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:"

(Malachi 2:17 KJV) "Ye have wearied the LORD with your words. Yet ye say, Wherein have we wearied him? When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and he delighteth in them; or, Where is the God of judgment?"

(Psalms 22:16-18 KJV) "For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have enclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet. {17} I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me. {18} They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture."

(Mark 15:33-34 KJV) "... when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. {34} And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"

(2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV) ".... he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."

(John 6:29 KJV) "... This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent."

2. The Nail Prints Remind Us That God Supplies

(John 20:26-27) "... And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. {27} Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing."

(1 Peter 1:18-19 KJV) "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; {19} But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:"

(Romans 8:31-32 KJV) "What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? {32} He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?"

(2 Corinthians 4:5-10 KJV) "For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake. {6} For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. {7} But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. {8} We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; {9} Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; {10} Always bearing about in the body the dying <we see the nail prints> of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body."

(2 Corinthians 11:24-27 KJV) "Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. {25} Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; {26} In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; {27} In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness."

(Ephesians 2:18-22 KJV) "For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. {19} Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; {20} And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; {21} In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: {22} In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."

(1 Peter 5:6-7 KJV) "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: {7} Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you."

3. The Nail Prints Remind Us Who We Serve

I serve a RISEN SAVIOR, He's in the world today;
I KNOW that He is living, whatever men may say;
I SEE HIS HAND of mercy, I hear His voice of cheer;
And just the time I need Him, He's always near!

(John 14:5-7 KJV) "Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? {6} Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. {7} If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him."

(2 Corinthians 5:6-8 KJV) "Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: {7} (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) {8} We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord."

Luke 16:24

(John 7:37-38 KJV) "In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. {38} He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water."