Jonathan Merritt, who writes On Faith & Culture for RNS, invited Diana Butler Bass — to write this guest column on his blog.

It’s an ancient Christian tradition to retell stories of Jesus appearing to people after the resurrection. Thanks to the lectionary, the story of ‘Doubting Thomas’ was assigned for last Sunday. Though many Christians in American churches revisited this narrative, most missed its point.

You may know the story. Jesus’ disciples are gathered when their resurrected rabbi shows up. But one of the twelve, Thomas, was not present to witness it. When the other disciples recounted the event, Thomas balked: “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.”

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Written by Jonathan