Have you ever failed a test not once, not twice but three times? 

I have. 

I asked myself, “What did I not understand?”  “Was I not paying attention?”  After my third failure, the teacher suggested I get a tutor.

I needed help!

It took a few days for the information to sink in. But I understood after trusting the process and the tutor.

A test consists of anything tried or proved by trustworthiness. Jesus tested the faith of the disciples after His resurrection. In John 20:19-20, the disciples met behind closed doors because they were afraid. Jesus came and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.” Then they were filled with joy. 

In John 20:27-28, Jesus said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!”

Believing is at the core of spiritual tests.

Right before Jesus ascended to His father, He tried the faith of the disciples to know for themselves whether they believed.  Jesus was their teacher to remind them. He asks questions, not for His understanding, but ours. He knows the hearts of man.

“But He was saying this only to test him, for He Himself knew what He intended to do” (John 6:6 NASB).

Tests are necessary to strengthen our faith. 

In the following verses, the emphasis on Jesus appearing again and the third time enforces the necessity of believing. John 21:1 says, “Later, Jesus appeared again to the disciples beside the Sea of Galilee. . . Further down in verse 14, the scripture reads, “This was the third time Jesus had appeared to his disciples since he had been raised from the dead.”

What was the disciples’ test?  Continue to believe.

“so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which perishes though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1Peter 1:7 NASB); 

I don’t like to retake tests, but Jesus wants to make sure I understand the core belief of my faith.  The process of securing work in my heart calls for continual confirmation. He is the constant presence in my process of becoming like him. So, He repeats his word to me again and again.

 “The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name.” John 20:30-31 NLT


Phyllis works as an Administration Assistant, Mentor, and Bible Teacher for Forgotten Children Inc. at Rachel’s House of Healing Residential Home for women who have been trafficked into prostitution. She is an Air Force Veteran and a PTSD survivor. She enjoys writing in the form of journaling. Experiencing breast cancer a few years ago forced her to consistently journal through the healing process. She believes restoration is God’s goal for everyone.  

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