Those are the words that describe how the apostles responded to the women who had visited Jesus' tomb and instead encountered two angels. Those angels announced that Jesus is not here; he has risen! The women went back to the apostles. What did the apostles think of this news? Nonsense!
It didn't stop Peter and John from going to the tomb to check it out. They had to see it for themselves. What did they discover? An empty tomb, just like the women had said. It was no longer nonsense. No, they didn't experience the angels. However, that night they got to see Jesus in the room where the apostles were meeting.
Why didn't the apostles automatically believe the women? Why did they have to see Jesus themselves to believe? Maybe, because the story was so incredible. Who would have thought Jesus would come back to life! Maybe, these women were perceived as delusional because of their grief. I don't know all the possibilities of why they thought the women were speaking nonsensical.
But as I was musing over this, I wondered why we have to see things for ourselves before we believe. Sometimes we act like those apostles when we hear stories of how God worked in people's lives at church. Doubt creeps into our minds; we ask ourselves, "Did that really happen?"
Something in our flesh has to see what happened. Something within us has to have heard what was said. We had to be there. If we weren't there, we struggle to believe. By the way, it's not just the scientific method that has been ingrained in us during our school years. The apostles didn't have that, yet they still did not believe.
But as I continued to meditate on this, I realized that if I want others to believe in Jesus and what I say about God, I have to somehow get them to experience Jesus for themselves. They might not believe me if they stay seated where they are. If I can only get them to explore the tomb as Peter and John did. If I can only get them to read the Word of God. If I can only get them to stop and pray. If only they will take some action to explore whether my words (or your words) are true, then maybe they will begin to see the truth of Jesus.
Jesus told the apostle Thomas, who had not been with those other apostles, "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed" (John 20:29). He too had to experience Jesus for himself.