Monday, April 13, 2009

The Empty Tomb

First Reading: Acts 2:14, 22-23
Psalm: Ps 16:1-2a and 5, 7-8, 9-10, 11
Gospel: Mt 28:8-15


In our readings today, Peter speaks publicly for the first time and the apostles begin their mission of spreading the good news. This was no small task, as the chief priests were still doing their best to stamp out what they saw as the blasphemy of Jesus (as seen in the gospel reading). Indeed, this preaching began about thirty years of being persecuted and led to martyrdom for almost every one of the eleven men who taught that day. Knowing this would be their lot, why did they preach at all? Because of the empty tomb.

Peter demonstrated this with a clear example that the people could not miss:
My brothers, one can confidently say to you
about the patriarch David that he died and was buried,
and his tomb is in our midst to this day. - Acts 2:29
Everyone knew this, but it resonated with something else that was known; Jesus' tomb was empty. No one was disputing this simple fact. The chief priests encouraged the rumor that Jesus' body had been removed by His disciples in the night, but they never denied that the tomb was empty. Remember, the Sadducees did not believe in the resurrection of the body for anyone, so to preserve their teachings, it was important to them that news of this resurrection did not reach the people.

In this, we have our hope. Because Christ is raised, so too shall we one day be raised. Death can hold us only for a time; Jesus Christ has destroyed its power forever.

May God's peace be with you in this Easter season.

Heavenly Father, we thank you for this day. We praise You for the great deeds you have performed for us. As we begin this Easter season, we pray that the love of Jesus shine through our lives and touch those here on earth. May we be emboldened as the apostles were by the testimony of the empty tomb. In You, O Lord, we place our trust. Amen.

No comments:

Post a Comment