(Thomʹas) [from Aramaic, meaning “Twin”].
This apostle of Jesus Christ was called “The Twin,” or Didymous. (Mt 10:3; Mr 3:18; Lu 6:15; Joh 11:16, ftn) He appears to have been somewhat impetuous in expressing his feelings or in voicing his doubts. However, upon having his doubts removed, Thomas did not hesitate to make acknowledgment of his belief.
When Jesus proposed returning to Judea that he might awaken Lazarus from death, Thomas declared: “Let us also go, that we may die with him.” (Joh 11:16) Since the Judeans had shortly before this time sought to stone Jesus (Joh 11:7, 8), Thomas perhaps had in mind encouraging the other disciples to accompany Jesus even though this might result in their joining Lazarus or Jesus in death.
Thomas showed a doubting attitude in response to Jesus’ comment about going away to prepare a place for the apostles, saying: “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How do we know the way?” (Joh 14:2-6) Similarly, after hearing about Jesus’ resurrection, Thomas stated: “Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails and stick my finger into the print of the nails and stick my hand into his side, I will certainly not believe.” Eight days later Thomas had the opportunity to do this when Jesus again appeared to the disciples. But whether Thomas actually did feel the wounds on this occasion is not stated. He was nevertheless convinced and exclaimed: “My Lord and my God!” Christ then mildly reproved him, saying: “Happy are those who do not see and yet believe.”—Joh 20:24-29.