|St Peter Preaching -- Massacio|
If there is a single idea that unites the readings for this Sunday it is ‘astonishment’. Astonishment has two sides. While we often describe something that astonishes us as ‘unbelievable’, we also explain the fact that some things fail to astonish us by saying that they are not 'believable'. That's how the Resurrection is for many modern people; they aren’t astonished by it, precisely because it's unbelievable.
Luke's Gospel shows that, despite our modern self-image, in this respect the disciples were not so very different from people today. They too were skeptical, and they thought that the Jesus who seemed to appear among them was more likely to be a ghost than a resurrected person – hence the physical touching and eating that Jesus uses to convince them otherwise. Since there is no body for us to 'touch', we can either accept the written record of their testimony, or we can say that the disciples must have been subject to some strange delusion or imaginative flight of fancy. Still, even if a 'bodily' resurrection were proven, this would not be sufficient to prove other ‘astonishing’ elements that, spiritually speaking, are in many ways far more important.
|Dali -- Christ St John of the Cross|