Faith Daily |18 April 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p 502
Lord of all life and power,
who, through the mighty resurrection of your Son,
overcame the old order of sin and death
to make all things new in him:
grant that we, being dead to sin and alive to you
in Jesus Christ,
may reign with him in glory;
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit
be praise, honour and thanksgiving, now and for all eternity.
GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 28: 8-15
8So they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9Suddenly Jesus met them and said, ‘Greetings!’ And they came to him, took hold of his feet, and worshipped him. 10Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.’
11 While they were going, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests everything that had happened. 12After the priests had assembled with the elders, they devised a plan to give a large sum of money to the soldiers, 13telling them, ‘You must say, “His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.” 14If this comes to the governor’s ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.’ 15So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story is still told among the Jews to this day.
GOSPEL REFLECTION: Debbie Pringle
The chief priests had done everything that they could to eliminate Jesus and the Jesus movement. They had tried to arrest Him (unsuccessfully) when He was teaching in the temple (John7) . After the raising of Lazarus they had plotted to kill Him (John11). Finally, they paid Judas to betray Him, gave Him a rushed and rigged trial, crucified Him, sealed and guarded the tomb, and then paid the guards to lie about what had happened to His body. Nothing they did could stop God fulfilling His plan for our salvation. In fact, God used their actions to bring His plan to fruition.
Mary Magdalene and the other Mary (the mother of James and Joses) had watched as Jesus was crucified and then as Joseph and Nicodemus laid Jesus’ body in the tomb (Matt 27:55,56,61). They loved Him and couldn’t bare to be parted from Him. As soon as the sabbath was over, they returned to the tomb (Matthew 28:1.) They had been the last to leave on the Friday and were the first there on Sunday morning. (Mark adds that Salome was also there and that they had gone to put spices on his body.) They were not expecting to see Jesus. They had come to look, grieve and be close to Him.
Verse 8 says that they were afraid yet filled with joy. Fearful because they had just experienced a violent earthquake (the second in about 36 hours) and seen an angel and the empty tomb. Joyful because the angel had told them that Jesus had risen, just as He said He would. The stone was not removed to let Jesus out, but so that they could see that He was no longer inside. They were beginning to understand.
The women, whose evidence, as women, would have been inadmissible in court, were told by the angel and then by Jesus himself, not to be afraid and to go and to tell what had happened.
Father, please help us to be Easter people, who hear You, and go and tell others the wonderful news of Jesus.