THURSDAY, SECOND WEEK OF EASTER
Reading 1: Acts 5: 27-33 following his cure of the lame man, Peter attributes it all to Jesus, who, he claims, fulfills all the messianic prophecies of Scripture.
Gospel: Jn 3: 31-36 Jesus appears to his apostles, proves his reality by eating a piece of fish, and then explains how Scripture foretold his death and resurrection.
INFLAMED BY LOVE
After the Resurrection, having received the promised gift of the Holy Spirit, the apostles began to preach the Gospel and to work miracles. The chief priests and the Sadducees were jealous, and considering the apostles as heretics and disturbers of peace, strongly charged them not to preach in the name of Jesus. But they replied: “Obedience to God comes before obedience to men.” This passage reveals to us that the apostles were men of courage, they obeyed their conscience and had a clear idea of their mission. They had seen and experienced the risen Christ, and were commissioned by Him to proclaim the Good News to the whole world.
Had the Pharisees been sincere seekers of the truth, they would have recognized the signs that confirmed the gospel message, and would have believed in the resurrection of Jesus and the authenticity of his teaching. But they chose to remain blind, and tried every means to suppress the truth. The disciples could not be silenced; it was the Holy Spirit who was proclaiming the truth through them.
Our faith leads us to a deeper knowledge of God; our obedience moves our hearts to listen to His voice and act accordingly. When we listen and obey, we too become witnesses of Christ; like the apostles, we too receive the grace to speak the truth boldly. Our relationship with God is what constitutes our identity as unique persons.
God’s call to us, to receive love and be drawn into this sacred intimacy, is what defines our humanness. If we truly believe in the God that Jesus has revealed to us, we will realize that our fundamental attitude or disposition should be one that is receptive to the divine love continually offered to us. Love must be freely given, freely received and freely returned. God always loves us and is working within us to enable us to respond to such love.
Res. Psalm Ps 33: 2, 9, 17-20 This lowly man called and the Lord heard him.
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