This Is The Word Of The Lord
April 27th, 2014
Author of Today’s Reading
St John the Apostle
St. John, the son of Zebedee, and the brother of St. James the Great, was called to be an Apostle by our Lord in the first year of His public ministry. He became the “beloved disciple” and the only one of the Twelve who did not forsake the Savior in the hour of His Passion. He stood faithfully at the cross when the Savior made him the guardian of His Mother. His later life was passed chiefly in Jerusalem and at Ephesus. He founded many churches in Asia Minor. He wrote the fourth Gospel, and three Epistles, and the Book of Revelation is also attributed to him. Brought to Rome, tradition relates that he was by order of Emperor Dometian cast into a cauldron of boiling oil but came forth unhurt and was banished to the island of Pathmos for a year. He lived to an extreme old age, surviving all his fellow apostles, and died at Ephesus about the year 100.
St John is called the Apostle of Charity, a virtue he had learned from his Divine Master, and which he constantly inculcated by word and example. The “beloved disciple” died at Ephesus, where a stately church was erected over his tomb. It was afterwards converted into a Mohammedan mosque.
John is credited with the authorship of three epistles and one Gospel, although many scholars believe that the final editing of the Gospel was done by others shortly after his death. He is also supposed by many to be the author of the book of Revelation, also called the Apocalypse, although this identification is less certain.
Today’s Gospel Reading
John 20:19-31 NJB
In the evening of that same day, the first day of the week, the doors were closed in the room where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews. Jesus came and stood among them. He said to them, ‘Peace be with you,’
and, aft er saying this, he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples were filled with joy at seeing the Lord,and he said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. ‘As the Father sent me, so am I sending you.’
After saying this he breathed on them and said: Receive the Holy Spirit.
If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven; if you retain anyone’s sins, they are retained.
Thomas, called the Twin, who was one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.
So the other disciples said to him, ‘We have seen the Lord,’ but he answered, ‘Unless I can see the holes that the nails made in his hands and can put my finger into the holes they made, and unless I can put my hand into his side, I refuse to believe.’
Eight days later the disciples were in the house again and Thomas was with them. The doors were closed, but Jesus came in and stood among them. ‘Peace be with you,’ he said.
Then he spoke to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; look, here are my hands. Give me your hand; put it into my side. Do not be unbelieving any more but believe.’
Thomas replied, ‘My Lord and my God!’
Jesus said to him: You believe because you can see me. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.
There were many other signs that Jesus worked in the sight of the disciples, but they are not recorded in this book.
These are recorded so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing this you may have life through his name.
What Does John Mean?
The sole purpose of these verses is the gift of faith in the realization that the Messiah is truly, the Son of God!
The disciples knew that Jesus was alive but this sudden appearance filled them with wonder and awe. “Peace be with you!” This is not just an empty greeting. This is full Gospel. It is an absolution. The greeting is in keeping with the Greeter. The first thing He does is to forgive their sins and declare that all is well.
He then shows them the evidence of His death on the cross by revealing His wounds. Finally proof positive of His suffering and resurrection.
Then He actually bestows the peace of the Father on each of them personally. He does it as a testament of the important office that is now entrusted to them. Additionally, He does it in front of other witnesses, as a means of validation!
Our Second Reading
First Peter 1:3-9 NJB
Blessed be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who in his great mercy has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and into a heritage that can never be spoilt or soiled and never fade away. It is reserved in heaven for you who are being kept safe by God’s power through faith until the salvation which has been prepared is revealed at the final point of time.
This is a great joy to you, even though for a short time yet you must bear all sorts of trials; so that the worth of your faith, more valuable than gold, which is perishable even if it has been tested by fire, may be proved — to your praise and honour when Jesus Christ is revealed.
You have not seen him, yet you love him; and still without seeing him you believe in him and so are already filled with a joy so glorious that it cannot be described;
and you are sure of the goal of your faith, that is, the salvation of your souls.
Thanks Be To God!
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