Sunday, April 19, 2015

EASTER - The Sunday Word

Third Sunday of Easter
"The two disciples recounted what had taken place on the way,
and how Jesus was made known to them
in the breaking of bread.

While they were still speaking about this,
he stood in their midst and said to them,
“Peace be with you.”
But they were startled and terrified
and thought that they were seeing a ghost.
Then he said to them, “Why are you troubled?
And why do questions arise in your hearts?
Look at my hands and my feet, that it is I myself.
Touch me and see, because a ghost does not have flesh and bones
as you can see I have.”
And as he said this,
he showed them his hands and his feet.
While they were still incredulous for joy and were amazed,
he asked them, “Have you anything here to eat?”
They gave him a piece of baked fish;
he took it and ate it in front of them.

He said to them,
“These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you,
that everything written about me in the law of Moses
and in the prophets and psalms must be fulfilled.”
Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.
And he said to them,
“Thus it is written that the Christ would suffer
and rise from the dead on the third day
and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins,
would be preached in his name
to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
You are witnesses of these things.”

Now gathered together in Jerusalem, with the anxiety, grief and wonder of the last three days on their minds, all the disciples and friends of Jesus tried to sort out the evidence. But then, suddenly, there he was among them saying, “Peace be with you.”  The perplexed and astounded disciples thought they were seeing a “ghost.”  Death is a trip from which no one is supposed to return, so it’s little wonder that the disciples were “frightened” and that even “in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering.” Yet, Jesus had no problem with people grabbing on to him to see if he’s real. “Touch me and see,” he says to his incredulous friends, “for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” Saint Luke makes it clear that this was no projection of imagination or collective fantasy. The risen Jesus was touchable and even hungry, asking his friends for a little fish on the barby.

The resurrection reminds us that our faith is not simply a “philosophy.”