The message of Easter is essentially one of the triumph of light over darkness, of hope over despair and of laughing in the face of death itself – yes, laughing! That Jesus rose from the dead and was actually seen by many of his disciples gives us a fresh insight into our ultimate destiny with God in the afterlife. It is only through the Resurrection that we can conceive of the possibility of an afterlife.
The very concept of an afterlife, however, is a joke to many very sincere people today. As they see it, we are deluding ourselves so that we don’t have to face the reality of nothingness when we die. To the modern scientific mind an empty tomb proves nothing and until I see the holes the nails made and can see the Risen Jesus in actuality, you’re talk is nonsense (sound familiar?!). It’s hard to argue with this Thomistic line of reasoning. Of course, we would love to see the Risen Jesus right here, right now and to question him but I think we will be waiting! The Lord will return in his own time. The reason I believe in the Resurrection is the many testimonies from those who saw him in the flesh so to speak, from Thomas who like us wasn’t willing just to take someone’s word for it as well as not actually finding his body, this is at least an invitation to dig deeper into the mystery of faith and open our minds to extraordinary possibilities.
As N.T. Wright, the New Testament scholar puts it: “Jesus’ resurrection is the beginning of God’s new project not to snatch people away from earth to heaven but to colonize earth with the life of heaven.”
Wishing you all a very happy and joy filled Easter – He is Risen, alleluia!
-Fr Richard Gibbons,
PP, Rector, Knock Shrine