Monday, 28 March 2016

Tuesday in the Easter Octave

Today's Gospel is St Luke 24:36-47:

36 Dum autem hæc loquuntur, stetit Jesus in medio eorum, et dicit eis: Pax vobis: ego sum, nolite timere. 37 Conturbati vero et conterriti, existimabant se spiritum videre. 38 Et dixit eis: Quid turbati estis, et cogitationes ascendunt in corda vestra? 39 videte manus meas, et pedes, quia ego ipse sum; palpate et videte, quia spiritus carnem et ossa non habet, sicut me videtis habere. 40 Et cum hoc dixisset, ostendit eis manus et pedes. 41 Adhuc autem illis non credentibus, et mirantibus præ gaudio, dixit: Habetis hic aliquid quod manducetur? 42 At illi obtulerunt ei partem piscis assi et favum mellis. 43 Et cum manducasset coram eis, sumens reliquias dedit eis. 44 Et dixit ad eos: Hæc sunt verba quæ locutus sum ad vos cum adhuc essem vobiscum, quoniam necesse est impleri omnia quæ scripta sunt in lege Moysi, et prophetis, et Psalmis de me. 45 Tunc aperuit illis sensum ut intelligerent Scripturas, 46 et dixit eis: Quoniam sic scriptum est, et sic oportebat Christum pati, et resurgere a mortuis tertia die: 47 et prædicari in nomine ejus pœnitentiam, et remissionem peccatorum in omnes gentes, incipientibus ab Jerosolyma.

[34] Saying: The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon. [35] And they told what things were done in the way; and how they knew him in the breaking of the bread.[36] Now whilst they were speaking these things, Jesus stood in the midst of them, and saith to them: Peace be to you; it is I, fear not. [37] But they being troubled and frightened, supposed that they saw a spirit. [38] And he said to them: Why are you troubled, and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? [39] See my hands and feet, that it is I myself; handle, and see: for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as you see me to have. [40] And when he had said this, he shewed them his hands and feet.[41] But while they yet believed not, and wondered for joy, he said: Have you any thing to eat? [42] And they offered him a piece of a broiled fish, and a honeycomb. [43] And when he had eaten before them, taking the remains, he gave to them. [44] And he said to them: These are the words which I spoke to you, while I was yet with you, that all things must needs be fulfilled, which are written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. [45] Then he opened their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures.[46] And he said to them: Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise again from the dead, the third day: [47] And that penance and remission of sins should be preached in his name, unto all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

Matins readings (from St Ambrose)

Reading 1: We see here the marvellous nature of the Lord's glorified Body. It could enter unseen, and then become seen. It could easily be touched, but Its nature is hard to understand. The disciples were affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. And therefore the Lord, that He might show us the evidence of His Resurrection, said: Handle Me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones as ye see Me have. Therefore it was not by being in a disembodied state, but by the peculiar qualities of the risen and glorified Body that He had passed through closed doors. John xx. 19. For that which is touched or handled is a body.

Reading 2: We shall all rise again with our bodies. But it is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. 1. Cor. xv. 44. The spiritual body is the finer, and the natural body is the grosser, besodden as yet by the corruption of earth. Was not That a real Body, wherein remained those marks of His Wounds, those holes of the nail -prints, which the Lord bade His disciples to handle? Hereby, also, He hath not only strengthened our faith, but also quickened our love, since we know that it has been His will to carry to heaven those Wounds which He bore for our sake, and wherewith He would not make away; but plainly showeth to His Eternal Father the price of our freedom. It is as marked with these Wounds and embracing the trophy of our salvation that the Father hath said to Him, Sit Thou at My right Hand : and it is, like Him, marked with their wounds, that He hath shown us that the Martyrs, whose Crown He is, are, and will be with Him there.

Reading 3: And now, since our Lesson from Luke here faileth, let us have recourse to John, and consider how that, according to him, xx. 20, then were the disciples glad when they saw the Lord, and received the grace of faith. According to Luke, He upbraided them with their unbelief, but according to John He said also, Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Luke, not John, hath, Tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high. Indeed, to me it seemeth as though the one Evangelist had busied himself with the greater and higher matters, and the other with the narrative, and such things as are more human : the one with the course, the other with the essence, of history. For as it is impossible to doubt the word of him who testifieth of these things, John xxi. 24, and who saw these things, and concerning whom we know that his testimony is true, xxi. 24, so is it sinful to think of negligence or falsehood as attaching to the other, even Luke, who earned to himself to be an Evangelist, albeit he was not an Apostle, and therefore we hold that both are truthful, neither are they at variance one with the other, either in the difference of the words they use, or in the sacredness of their characters as Evangelists. For though Luke saith that at the first the Apostles believed not, yet he showeth that afterward they believed : and although, if we regard only the first fact, the Evangelists seem divergent one from the other, yet, when we consider what cometh afterward, we see that they are at one.

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