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John 11:16

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  • It isn't always easy to believe, sometimes cynicism gets in the way.
"Thomas therefore, who is called Didymus, said to his fellow disciples, "Let us also go, that we may die with Him." (John 11:16)

H. L. Mencken said, "A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin." An unknown author wrote that a cynic is: "One who not only reads bitter lessons from the past, but who is prematurely disappointed with the future." I believe a cynic is a "toxic pessimist," someone whose negative, faithless attitude harms their family, friends and their church.

Judas fits the profile. Remember how he reacted after a wonderful act of worship? A woman broke open an alabaster bottle of expensive perfume and poured it over Jesus. Judas became indignant and complained.

John 12:4-6 NLT But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples--the one who would betray him--said, [5] "That perfume was worth a small fortune. It should have been sold and the money given to the poor." [6] Not that he cared for the poor--he was a thief who was in charge of the disciples' funds, and he often took some for his own use. 

Cynics are always thieves. Even if they don't steal money, as Judas did, they rob life of its vigor and joy. Thomas is known for his doubting. The root of his doubt is a cynical spirit. In this text, he is willing to die for Jesus, but not believe in Him.

  • It isn't always easy to believe, sometimes theology gets in the way.
Rejoining the text in John 11:22-28, we read, "Even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You." [23] Jesus said to her, "Your brother shall rise again." [24] Martha said to Him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day." [25] Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me shall live even if he dies, [26] and everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?" [27] She said to Him, "Yes, Lord; I have believed that You are the Christ, the Son of God, even He who comes into the world." [28] And when she had said this, she went away, and called Mary her sister, saying secretly, "The Teacher is here, and is calling for you." 

Addressing religious and spiritual leaders from around the world at the Millennium World Peace Summit at the United Nations, Ted Turner said:

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