Thomas and Gideon (was Re: Abraham)

Bill Hamilton (
Fri, 12 Apr 1996 10:29:27 -0400

Glenn Morton wrote:

Ouch. I stand corrected, but must admit that Thomas is
>still my kinda fellow. Why do you think God made Thomas
>and I with this tendency? :-)
Christians sometimes get criticized for "putting out a fleece" -- and that
criticism implies criticism of Gideon, who put a fleece out to determine if
the person who spoke to him was really God. I've always thought that
criticism of Gideon was misdirected. Most people today when they talk of
"putting out a fleece" mean they resolved that if a given event occurred,
they would take that as a message from God to proceed with some plan. I
agree that that's dangerous, but that's not what Gideon did. He had
already been spoken to by God and he wanted to authenticate that it was
indeed God who spoke to him. So he put the fleece out on two successive
nights and did what any good scientist would do. He asked that the fleece
be dry while the surrounding ground be wet one night, and asked for the
reverse the other night. He didn't want to be tricked by a natural
phenomenon that might bias the fleece to have more or less condensation
than the surrounding ground. That's just good science. And God honored
his request.

BTW, it's not known whether Thomas actually saw or touched Jesus' wounds.
I find it hard to believe that he did, because I imagine he recognized
Jesus as soon as he saw him. But Thomas had a point. If Jesus was truly
resurrected, this was the most significant event in all history, and Thomas
wanted to be sure it was really true.

You are in good company, Glenn.

Bill Hamilton | Chassis & Vehicle Systems
GM R&D Center | Warren, MI 48090-9055
810 986 1474 (voice) | 810 986 3003 (FAX) (office) | (home)