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April 16, 1993     The Message
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April 16, 1993
 

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16,1993 The Memmae -- for Catlml of Southwute Indiana 9 -- Commentary -- John's proof of the resurrection: Doubting Thomas Gospel commentary for April 4, the Second Sunday of Easter, Cycle A: John 20:19-31 The gospel reading for today is divided into three parts: the 3earance of Jesus to the when he bestows upon the Holy Spirit; the episode of doubtin ; the original gospel until chapter added to it. The first part will be the gospel reading for Sunday. This part will examined at that time. It is very different "pentecost" Lt of Luke in Acts of : Apostles. When Jesus appears to the disciples on the r of the resurrection, he must demonstrate figure they see is truly himself. In the he did this by eating a piece of fish. Here in the Gospel of John he shows the nailprints in his hands and the lance- WOund in his side. We notice there is no refer- ence to his nail-pierced feet. The question has arisen as to whether or not Jesus' feet were nailed g on a small wooden ledge at- to the beam of the cross. Recent excava- on Mount Scopus (Mount of Olives?) re- tile mummified body of a crucified man. nails were driven through his wrists and his ankles. F0 We know that frequc'ntly the authors of our ur gospels used Old Testament sayings to inter- uBgNFATHER DILGER COLUMNIST pret Jesus. It is possible that the idea of Jesus' feet being pierced is an adaptation of Psalm 22:16: "They have pierced my hands and feet." We also see that only in the Gospel of John is Jesus' side pierced with a lance. The influ- ence of two other Old Testament texts is probable: "They will look upon him whom they have pierced," Zechariah 12:10, and Isaiah 53:5: "He was pierced through for our faults." John needs that piercing of the side so that the blood and water issuing from Jesus' side become a symbol of baptism and the Eucharist. Thomas was gone when Jesus first appeared to the disciples. When informed of the appear- ance, Thomas expressed doubt. Unless he per- sonally feels those nailprints in Jesus' hands and then puts his hand in the wound in Jesus' side he will not believe. Jesus returns eight days later. This time Thomas is present. Jesus invites him to do precisely what Thomas had demanded as to touching the wounds. Jesus invites him to be- lieve rather than doubt. Thomas doesn't follow through on the touching of the wounds. Instead he answers: "My Lord and my God." Jesus does not praise him for his faith which demanded proof. Instead he adds what were at one time his last words in this gospel: "Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe." The whole Thomas episode intends to speak in Terris' ma :ks 30th r in world still facing wars BYCINDY WO()I)EN scripthm. el tii d,cum;nt m 5um, L:h,,ack;liH, ut thu 'Catholic News Service articles and commentaries document highlighted bv the 2AN CITY ((:NS) --- XXlll's em:vclical in 'rervis" ("pc:ace m celebrated its 30th in a c}.mged worht, still gr.ppling with injustice, arms race and le tension hetween two SUl)erpowers :tage for the encvcli- April 11, 1963 -- after the Cuban wore hopeful on the world scene as rticularlv the just dependence of as, especially and an increasing of basic human John addressed his all people of good Only Catholics, call- new order in human ,cry level, from to the global nations. as were re- the human being image of God me to the natural in the hearts ences of all men on earth, which all every era haw; most 'd for, can be only if the OWn by God be d," said the fl)ur pil- order  repeated again in the en- lruth, justice, al of hope" for a new . COmmon de- marking the dOCllnlellt's lH- uivorsa]v at lht Vati(:an and in Romo. "If tt)dav w(', find in politi- cal and e(onomic iife many Christians -- and there are HIaIIV lllore than st)me he,qieve -- ('ho strttggli.' for greater justice and peace on the earth, it is partly the result of the stimuhts and impetus" of the encvt:lical, said Cardinal Roger ltchegaray, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. "Pacem in Terris" can be more relevant than ever today if "each one of us allows our- selves to be ignited by the fire of the spirit which it illumi- nated, '" Cardinal Etchegaray said. French cardinal included: .,\\; (:onstant reference' to the human person, to the rights of individuals and to their restmnsibilitics to one another and to society. -- Tile need kr even' polit- ical coinultlllitv to ilave a democratic structure to pro- te:t those rights and encour- age everyone to exm'cise their responsibilities in the con> llltlnitv. -- :,n unambigumls (:all for nuclear disarmament. -- And "encouragement for the creation of an effective "supranational' authority." All four of those ideas are now commonplace in the so- cial teaching of the church, he said. RUXER FORD - LINCOLN - MERCURY JASPER 482-1200 I Subscribe to the Message I I I II I I I IIII I IIIII II "Where customers send their friends" Open nightly til 9 p.m. hot & Son OLD IJS 231 SOIITII - JASF[li, III - 412-2222 Did You Know: 1-800-937"USA1 OLDS CIERA is most trouble free car made in America J.D. Powers ii ii i ii III I I I[ to the issue of doubt among Christians. We find the problem already in Mark's constant insis- tence that the disciples learned practically noth- ing during the whole time Jesus was with them. Matthew treats the subject of doubt at Jesus' ap- pearance to the disciples on a mountain in Galilee. Like the Gospel of John, Matthew puts doubt as a final issue. He writes: "When they saw him they worshipped him, but some doubted." Luke treats the issue of doubt also during Jesus' appearance when Jesus has to in- sist that he is not a ghost and displays the nail wounds. Luke adds that the disciples still disbe- lieved, but he excuses them as he did in the Gar- den of Gethsemane. In Gethsemane they slept out of sorrow; here they disbelieved out of sheer joy. Perhaps we can learn from this story that it is not abnormal to doubt. If the disciples who saw Jesus after the resurrection could still doubt, how much more would it be normal for us who have not had that privilege to sometimes doubt. It is precisely for this reason that John depicts Jesus as saving: "Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe." To remove any doubt as to the purpose of his book, John now adds: "These things are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God, and that be- lieving you may have life in his name." John did not write history or biography. He selected mate- rial which we can reach only through faith. With Thomas we sav: "My Lord and my God." .... Other readings: Acts 2:42-47; I Peter 1:3.9. FOR COMPLETE ELECTRICAL SERVICE FISCHER ELECTRIC INC. COMPLETE INSURANCE I Auto! Home! Fire & Lifel ! Your Personal Service Agent ] James L. Will Ins. Agency In . [ ,1925 W. 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