Third Sunday of Easter, 2015
Hello everyone! This week's readings were very inspirational for me, and I hope they were the same for you. Here are the readings for this week:
First Reading: Acts 3:13-15, 17-19
Second Reading: 1 John 2:1-5A
Gospel: Luke 24:35-48
First Reading Thoughts
In today's first reading, we have Peter talking to a group of people, we can only assume they are Jewish based on the language he uses, and talking about how they let Christ be cruxified. Why I think that he is talking to a Jewish community is based on his saying, "the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus".
One could think that Peter is admonishing the crowd for their actions of letting Jesus be crucified while setting Barabbas free, but I believe he understood the mob mentality, and was only pointing out what their actions were. I don't see Peter as a man who is standing there scolding these people, but instead reminding them who Christ was, and how this story was spoken of throughout the ages from the prophets.
He even speaks at the end of how one could be forgiven of their sins, all he or she would need to do would be to truly repent. This reading is very powerful in that it shows just how the crowd mentality came into play during the death of Jesus, and the act of repentance could give anyone forgiveness, even the one in the crowd who called for Jesus to be crucified.
Second Reading Thoughts
The second reading is very poetic, as is customary for any of the writings attributed to John. The message is very clear, at least from my perspective: Do not sin, but if you do, Jesus is there for you.
The actions are very simple on this too: keep the commandments of God, and Jesus has got your back. He understands what it is like to be human, and how we can make mistakes. If we do sin, we have Jesus to thank for being forgiven, as he came and died for our sins.
Now this does not mean that we can go on living a life that is unclean or leads us down a continual road of sin. We must turn our lives around to live a more righteous life. However, if on that road to living a more righteous life we do fall and sin, Jesus is going to cover our sins, as he paid the price already.
As we read down towards the end, John speaks about those who say that they know Jesus, but don't live the commandments, they are liars and they do not know or speak the truth. It is one of the few times that I can think of where someone is actually calling a group of people out as liars. Very powerful reading indeed.
This reading clearly takes place after the Resurrection, and may even be shortly after the Resurrection. It shows two of the disciples traveling, parts unknown, and talking about the events that just took place. Apparently this seems to follow right after last week's reading, where He shows up in the locked room to show them he is back.
What seems to be repeating from last week's reading as well is Him saying "Peace be with you", and showing the disciples his hands and feet so they can see the wounds, and know it is truly Jesus. In this particular reading, He even goes as far as to get a piece of fish from them and eat it, so they know He is not a ghost, but in the flesh.
To tie in with the first reading, Jesus tells the disciples that all that happened was in accordance with Scripture so that it would be fulfilled. What I find interesting in this part is that it doesn't just proclaim the new covenant, as we Christians believe, but also reaffirms the covenant with Israel. All of the Scripture writings that Jesus refers to that must be fulfilled are from the Old Testament, which also makes up the Jewish Torah.
In all three readings, we see that Jesus' death is referred to in each, and how that death was prophesied and written about long before he came to this earth. What I get out of the three readings, in the simple format, is that one should repent and sins will be forgiven. When you repent and have your sins forgiven, you must follow a different path or you do not have the truth within you and you live a lie.
So what are your thoughts? I look forward to hearing what you have to say about these readings. And remember, the journey does not end when you accept Jesus into your life, it begins. Go Live Your Faith!