GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY – 16TH APRIL 2017
GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings)
DATE: 16TH APRIL 2017
FIRST READING: Acts 10:34, 37-43
PSALM: Psalm 118: 1-2, 16-17, 22-23
SECOND READING: Colossians 3:1-4 OR 1Corinthians 5:6-8
GOSPEL: John 20:1-9
THEME: HE IS ALIVE!
On Easter morning, Mary Magdalene ran, Peter ran and the beloved disciple ran. It was not an organised jogging or keep-fit exercise. It was an unusual morning. Something had happened. The tomb of Jesus was empty.
Some biblical scholars are of the view that the piece of information given in John 20:7, which reads “the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head was not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself” is a corroborating evidence of the resurrection. The point is that no thief would have taken the time to unwrap the corpse of Jesus and neatly fold his burial clothes in the tomb.
In John’s Gospel account of the resurrection, the time of the morning that Mary Magdalene went to the tomb is described as “still dark” (Jn. 20:1). This emphasis by John, unlike the other Gospel accounts of the resurrection, serve a purpose. Reading further, we are told “Till this moment they had still not understood the scripture, that he must rise from the dead” (Jn. 20:9). The death of Jesus was a mystery for his followers (a kind of darkness) but his resurrection becomes the key that would unlock that mystery and bring light to their understanding.
No matter how hard you press a calabash into a pool of water, it will surface on top of the water. Why? The nature of the calabash is such that it cannot stay under water. Jesus Christ had a divine nature and this nature was such that he could not stay in the tomb forever. Death could not hold him captive.
The fact is Jesus is alive and the Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead is the same Spirit who lives inside a Christian. The implication is very deep. It means no “tomb”, be it physical, emotional, psychological, spiritual, financial (name it), has the power to hold a Spirit-filled Christian forever. If you find yourself in any “tomb–like” or apparently hopeless situation, take heart and prophetically tell that “tomb”, it is just a matter of time and that you shall arise.
PRAYER OF BLESSING: May the power of the resurrection lift you up from every situation that has brought you down. May the Lord give you an Easter testimony. May something beautiful happen to you as we enter into the Octave of Easter. Jesus is alive!!! Amen.
Andrews Obeng, svd
DIVINE WORD MISSIONARIES
BIBLICAL PASTORAL MINISTRY
“May the darkness of sin and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word and the Spirit of grace. And may the heart of Jesus live in the hearts of all people” (St. Arnold Janssen).