Tag Archives: Passion of Christ

Sentenced to death!

Imagine you were this very down-to-earth person. You lived an exceptionally good life; fed the hungry, took care of the sick, sheltered the homeless. Where there were issues of rights violations, you sought to help the aggrieved persons find that highly craved justice.

Slowly I’ve come to realise that the word justice is at the tip of almost everyone’s tongues. Sadly, it’s a very emotive issue which only remains a mirage; the desolate yearn for it and wake up every morning, hoping to find it. The ‘authorities’ on the other hand, avoid it like a plague and pull all possible strings to ensure the common citizenry don’t even come remotely near it.

Moved by the plight of these dejected people, you do all in your power to help them resolve their issues. In short, you are the epitome of a saint. But as this is not some delusional utopia where everyone advocates for good, you become an irritating prickly thorn in the flesh of all those who are in one way or another inconvenienced by your saintly actions; say corrupt officials, who feel you’re upsetting status quo by opening people’s eyes to the rampant evil being perpetrated against them by those in power.

Furthermore, majority of the hoi polloi can’t quite comprehend how someone walking the streets in a world shrouded by moral depravity could be so good for real. So they presume it’s just another case of some shrewd charlatan trying to act all ‘holier-than-thou’ and stuff… and obviously, from that erroneous presumption stems deep-sitted loathing.

The self-proclaimed ‘saints’ on the other hand, who should at least try to understand you for God’s sake, fault you for blaspheming their God, because you claim to have some special relations with Him. He is your Father; and the world just can’t take it. You’re too much… and therefore must be eliminated.

Eventually, you’re brought to trial for ‘being so good’… It’s preposterous, isn’t it? The officials, whose wicked ways wouldn’t let your saintly ways drive them out of business, are only very eager to have you silenced permanently. Unsurprisingly, people are so willing to give you away.

You realise, everyone hates you. Everyone’s against you; even the ones you helped when they were in dire in need refuse to stand by you. The only people who know and love you are a measly handful; who essentially, are your family and those in your inner circle.

After awfully skewed deliberations, the verdict is given. You’re sentenced to death by being nailed to the cross. It’s the most shameful way to die. You’re stripped off your clothes and displayed on a windy hill for all and sundry to see. Weak, and helpless, you watch, as the people you tried so hard to fight for jeer at you, watering down all the good you did…

What they don’t know is, that you were neither a charlatan, nor some self-righteous ‘goody-two-shoes’. You are who you claimed to be; merciful, kind, and loving all unconditionally. Better still, you know The Almighty God on a very personal level.

As a result of that, even in that dejected moment, when your scourged body is bleeding out, and your heartbeat is growing fainter, you still hope that someday, all those who have rejected you will understand and accept the principles you so bravely championed for; and subsequently accept you.

Ultimately, in one final act of love, you ask God to forgive them, for they knew not what they were doing. You’re so good, that even in that searing pain you can’t harbour any grudges against them.

And you breathe your last!

Taking all that humiliation into consideration, imagine you had some supernatural powers… Knowing my human weaknesses, which I try so hard to overcome, smiting with lightning immediately comes to mind…

Today is Good Friday, and we’re commemorating the death of that baby born on Christmas day. He died such a shameful death, when he was just at the peak of His youth. And if you’re wondering what he was guilty of, His love for us nailed Him to the cross. He was the Paschal sacrifice, whose blood was meant to wash our sins away.

This Easter, we’re called to reflect on that great love, that made Jesus give His life up for us. There are many lessons to learn from His Passion. Now, the onus is on us; to reject Him, or to accept Him and follow the precepts He died advocating for: to love God above all; to love one another and to follow the Will of God in our daily lives. He too accepted His Father’s will; to die on the cross, knowing only too well, that it would be a harrowing experience.

I wish you a very blessed Easter.

 

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Father forgive them, for they know not what they do

Jesus crucified

In life, there will always be times when every person is wronged by another (s). That’s just the way life is. It could be an innocent child, molested by a man/woman they thought was their protector; a father for instance, and they’re too young to comprehend what happened to them, until much later when they realize they were raped.

It could be a very loving and faithful wife, married to a very abusive husband, who comes home late at night, wreaking of alcohol and spewing insults, annihilating the woman’s self-esteem in ways so unimaginable, so she never feels worthy of mingling with other human beings. Occasionally, the woman will be walking around with a swollen face, marred by bruises put on her by the man she loved or still loves.

It could even be a naïve faithful, taken advantage of by someone she thought was her spiritual guide; a pastor, who was supposed to help them attain salvation.

It could even be an emaciated kid, wandering the cold, unsafe streets at night in sheer solitude, simply because their mom abandoned them when they were still infants…or because they couldn’t stand their father’s abuse at home and therefore chose to flee.

I could only think of so many instances… the list is endless.

As human beings, when we’re in the hands of our tormentors, we curse them and ask God to avenge us. That’s only normal. In recent posts, I’ve mentioned how lately dad has become so heartless and egocentric. He flagrantly shows up in the house in a drunken stupor, staggering sometimes and he starts hurling insults at us.

In one particular episode, about a month ago, he was sitted on the couch sipping on some beer. A while later he started arguing with mom and before long, he was on his feet. Grabbing the bottle, he walked to the entrance door and did the unthinkable. He tipped the bottle, emptying its contents on a floor that hadn’t dried completely since I’d mopped it only recently.

It was a Sunday evening and, I had been breaking my back since I came from church, trying to clean the house. By the time I was done my back was in pain from accumulated fatigue since I have classes six days a week and I hadn’t been resting.

I could barely contain my rage. “Why have you become this unfeeling?” I asked him. “I’ve just finished mopping”.

“It’s my money,” he replied, “I can do with it as I please.”

“How could you do that?”

To my utter disappointment, he didn’t seem remorseful one bit. “I can still spill some more,” he threatened.

Incensed, I barked. “Even the mightiest people know when to say sorry”.

“Just get out of here!” He ordered, his words slurred.

“Money has made you this arrogant,” I continued, my voice raised. “May God take it all away. And you see how you’ve been treating us like worthless trinkets? You’ll come to us, crawling on your knees, asking for forgiveness”. I was feeling so hurt at such haughtiness, that I was shaking, my fists tightly clenched. At that point I know I could have done something so drastic. It’s no wonder nowadays I always avoid getting involved in any altercations with him because I fear I could do something bad. God-forbid!

“You’re talking like that because I already paid your school fee,” he argued. This is because he cut my two sisters off and said they shouldn’t even call him dad.

“Money’s not everything,” I countered vehemently. “Respect’s a two way street. If you want us to respect you, you should also accord us the same… and right now you’re not doing that.” With that I left, just to go cool off.

A while later, while he was spewing insults, like he’s being accustomed to, I heard a dull thud, followed by my sisters’ giggles… and I got all curious. While I was about to head back to the living room, I heard them say amid laughter, “See?”

Apparently, he had slipped on the wet floor, courtesy of the beer he had spilled and had fallen on the ground. Knowing my sisters, I knew the laughter wasn’t malicious. Dad naturally hates it when we laugh, so they just wanted to drive a point home; that in his arrogance he had poured the beer on the floor, only to end up on the same floor; that he had erred by pouring that beer and worse still, seeming so unapologetic about it. When he got back to his feet, he opened another bottle and emptied it on the floor again…

Today’s Easter Monday. Last week was a Holy week, where we celebrated the Holy Triduum (three holy days) starting from Holy Thursday evening, when Jesus washed His disciple’s feet before celebrating the Last Supper with them in preparation for His Passion; celebrated on Good Friday when He dies on the cross, the Easter Vigil Mass, on Holy Saturday; to Easter Sunday. Yesterday, we celebrated His glorious resurrection, when He triumphed over death.

On Good Friday, when the priest was giving his brief sermon, he emphasized on forgiveness. “Jesus didn’t curse His tormentors for putting Him through so much agony when He was entirely blameless. Instead, He asked His Father, ‘Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do’”.

Just like Jesus forgave His tormentors, we’re also called to forgive those who make us suffer unjustly; as opposed to cursing them. Speaking from my own personal experience, it’s very difficult forgiving someone/people who torment us incessantly; but following in Christ’s footsteps, I’m making a personal effort to forgive my dad and all those I feel make my life miserable.

I’m not in the habit of wishing ill upon others but unfortunately, that is something that’s growing on me from the constant conflicts I have with dad. I ask for God’s grace to do only, that which pleases Him. It’s really not easy but I have to try. We all should.

Villains in our midst

Villains in our midst

One thing I’ve gathered from all the TV shows I’ve watched: movies, soaps, cartoons and all, is that at least in every story there must be antagonists and protagonists. Pick any Walt Disney favourite for instance…

Cinderella has her step mother and the two step sisters, who darken her days perpetually; Rapunzel has that witchy ‘mother’- the abductor who always claims to love and know what’s best for the golden haired maiden; in 101 Dalmatians there’s Cruella, who tries rounding up all the dotted hounds so she can make herself a fur coat from their beautiful white furs with strewn black spots…

In short, for the story’s protagonist to have that happily ever after, there must the grand fall of the antagonist; a very celebrated thing in most cases. These stories however, are not the kind I want to delve into today. I’m thinking more along the lines of the I-want-to-take-over-the-world kind of villains.

One thing I’m always wondering is why some people are so obsessed with ruling the world. This desire is apparently so strong that one would practically do anything to get hold of that power. The so called villains-of-the-piece will do everything from having the crown prince (ss) abducted in a usually half-baked attempt to sabotage their chances of inheriting the throne when the reigning king/queen dies, to assassinating all those who stand in their way. It’s never pretty, really.

Someone would be utterly mistaken to think this kind of scheming is only a fiction of scriptwriters’ imagination. These ploys are best seen in real life stories where for instance, someone wants to assume a certain political position and there are too many candidates running for the post; or in companies where one wants to sit at the helm and the seat’s already occupied.

Sometimes, one finds themselves starring at one of the most inconceivable machinations and it becomes even more complex to fathom how a person, deemed a saint in the making by all and sundry, turns out to be the villain.

During these past few weeks I’ve been made privy to one of the worst kinds of rumours; I only choose to call them that because even though bits of the story have been confirmed, some still remain unconfirmed and I know it’s only a matter of time before everything comes to light.

As it turns out, even the most unlikely of persons could turn out to be the villains. In this case, both the antagonist and protagonist are respected men of the cloth. The characters, who I will name A and B respectively, are caught up in a war-not a fist fight though.

The issue apparently is that A, who is B’s assistant, has been conspiring with some spiteful faithful to ‘dethrone’ B, who heads the parish. In his attempt to sink B, A together with his minions fabricated all sorts of allegations so B would be banished from the church.

As I’ve already pointed out, A wants to be the one heading the parish. The few faithful on the other hand, are displeased with B because he’s so strict and won’t let anyone embezzle church funds. Talk about suffering for doing the right thing. Some of the allegations I’ve heard raised against him are just downright false and I pray that with time every truth will be revealed.

This story has had me thinking a lot. First of all, one would imagine that anyone who has spent years in theology school, learning how to be a “fisher of men” would have the will power to restrain from tarnishing his fellow priest’s name.

I speak of will power because I know every human being is prone to sin ergo no one is perfect. However, one would imagine that the solemn vows made, to serve God above all else would strengthen one’s desire to do all that pleases Him; just like in marriages, what keeps a couple grounded are those vows taken: to love and cherish each other…for better or worse.

I feel we have become our own worst enemies. We persecute our fellow Christians (in light of the example above) and still lament how the world is filled with evil. Our systems on the other hand, are so corrupt that an aggrieved person can’t even seek justice; and so accustomed have we grown to that life of lies and defrauding that when a clean and pure heart tries to uproot that evil, nipping it from the bud, we turn against them.

We’ve been awfully enshrouded in darkness that we perceive the good guys as the bad guys and instead of plucking the wolves from our midst we sacrifice the innocent sheep. That’s the harsh reality of what the world has turned into; blameless victims rot behind bars while the actual culprits walk the streets in broad day light, carefree; without an ounce of guilt to cloud their seemingly bright days.

The passion of Christ springs to mind; the part where the Jews asked for Barabbas to be released from prison when he was actually guilty and for Jesus to be killed (Matthew 27: 17-26). We are those people. We asphyxiate truth and justice and eagerly embrace ally kinds of evil that a real Christian would frown upon.

Jesus said some pagans are better than believers, because –in my understanding- the latter are just impenitent reprobates hiding behind the Bible; and I couldn’t agree more.

Sadly, we fail to realize that God is ever just. He vindicates those who follow His ways and brings their foes to their knees, and what’s more, we can build or destroy with our words and deeds; the choice is ours. And as we know, each decision has a consequence.

 

Of temptations and Lent

Jesus in the wilderness

“We’re all in the desert”. Those were the priest’s words during mass as we celebrated the first Sunday of lent. Today’s gospel was on Jesus’ stay in the desert for forty days and nights (Mark 1: 12-15). In the olden ‘Biblical’ days, it was believed that demons resided in the desert.

Ergo, when Jesus went to the desert, He put Himself at ‘a risk’…not that the demons would have done anything to Him, no matter how desperately they desired it. However, that just goes to show the magnitude of His suffering for those forty days He stayed there. I’m imagining it was like head-to-head; with every demon giving it their best shot so they could brag they’re the ones who annihilated the Son of the Almighty God.

Satan, the father of all evil, tempted Him but Jesus remain steadfast; his faith unwavering, as He prepared Himself for the excruciating pain He knew lay ahead of Him during His passion. Based on what we read in the bible, He wouldn’t have wished such agonizing pain upon His own self, but only agreed to it as that was His Father’s will. Forty days later He was out of the desert, having triumphed over Satan.

In the Genesis story of how Lucifer – a once hallowed angel- came to be the father of all evil, we’re told that He wanted to have the same power as God. Subsequently, God kicked Him out of Heaven and damned him to hell – the eternal pit of fire.

Angry and vengeful, Lucifer waged war against God, promising to turn the same men He’d created in His own image against Him. With that he set up camp on earth, determined to live up to his threat. From then on, temptations became the order of the day as he tried to win more and more souls for himself and slowly, the world became full of evil as brother turned against brother, shedding blood callously… and the rest, as they say, is history.

This, I believe, is what the priest had in mind when he said we’re all living in a desert. Satan walks in our midst, doing his best so we can all sell our souls to him. More often than not, we find ourselves at crossroads, trying to choose between the real right decision that might not be the most pleasant or even easy to achieve and the easy decision which appears more appealing but which invariably turns out to be another one of Satan’s numerous traps.

For instance, someone’s marriage is on the rocks. Right when they are in the middle of that crisis, another person comes along promising them the moon. So instead of working on the breaking marriage, which might actually turn out to be the best decision in the end, one opts to get into a secret affair with the ‘stranger’.

Eventually, one learns first hand that ‘it’s better the demon you know than the angel you don’t’, when everything with the ‘stranger’ moves from rosy to disastrous. It’s all part of the devil’s schemes to get back at God; problem is, were the ones caught in between; and he strikes when we’re most vulnerable.

The painful fact is that for as long as the earth rotates in its axis, and the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, there will always be temptations; moreover, based on the strength of our faith, chances are we will fall sometimes.

We may not be in a situation to help it but there’s a solution; to pray without ceasing. Lent is that time of the year when we’re called to reflect on our actions – what we’ve done and what we’ve failed to do – and how all that affects our relationship with God.

Mostly, we fall into temptations because of the problems we encounter in our lives. If we’re going through a difficult phase in our lives, the bible tells us to pray, believe that God has heard our prayers and then wait patiently without worrying.

Not worrying, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts is easier said than done, but once we get into the habit of entrusting God with those ‘impossible’ problems, we will realize the benefits that come with it. We will wade through those murky waters and come out victorious, just like Jesus did.

So don’t forget; the secret really, is to pray, pray and pray some more. Additionally, the pillars of lent, are prayer, fasting and alms giving –helping those in need; and as I’ve said before, anyone – irrespective of faith/religion- can take this Lenten season as a period to reflect, and to see what they can do to be better than they were yesterday.

 

Lord, You have deceived me

Jesus carrying cross

Lord you have deceived me,
And I was deceived
You are stronger than I am,
And you have overpowered me.
Everyone makes fun of me;
They laugh at me all day long.

Whenever I speak, I have to cry out and shout,
“Violence! Destruction!”
Lord I am ridiculed and scorned all the time
Because I proclaim your message.

But when I say, “I will forget the Lord
And no longer speak in His name,”
Then your message is like a fire burning deep within me.
I try my best to hold it in, but can no longer keep it back.

I hear everybody whispering,
“Terror is everywhere!
So let’s report him to the authorities!”
Even my close friends wait for my downfall.
“Perhaps he can be tricked,” they say,
“then we can catch him and get revenge.”

But you, Lord, are on my side,
Strong and mighty, and those who persecute me will fail.
They will be disgraced forever, because they cannot succeed
Their disgrace will never be forgotten.

But Almighty Lord, You test men justly;
You know what is in their hands and minds.
So let me see you take revenge on my enemies,
For I have placed my cause in your hands.

Sing to the Lord!
Praise to the Lord!
He rescues the oppressed
From the power of evil men
Curse the day I was born!
Forget the day my mother gave me birth!

Curse the man, who made my father glad,
When he brought him the news,
“It’s a boy! You have a son!”
May he be like those cities
That the Lord destroyed without mercy.

May he hear cries of pain in the morning,
And the battle alarm at noon,
Because he didn’t kill me before I was born.
Then my mother’s womb would have been my grave.

Why was I born?
Was it only to have trouble and sorrow,
To end my life in disgrace? (Jeremiah 20:7-18).

Jeremiah was a prophet chosen by God, even though at first he was reluctant to accept the calling, citing youth (Jeremiah 1: 4-18). He lived during the latter part of the seventh century B.C. and the first part of the sixth century. During his long ministry he warned God’s people of the misfortune that was to fall upon the nation because of their idolatry and sin.

He was a sensitive man, who loved his people profoundly and who hated to pronounce judgement upon them. But as he says in the lamentation above, the word of the Lord was like a fire in his heart, which he couldn’t suppress, no matter how much he tried.

At one point in life each believer feels the same way; when they feel like their belief in God is being questioned, especially if something is not going right and others just can’t seem to understand why one would still believe in Him when everything around shows He is manifestly unreliable.

Sometimes remaining faithful to God feels difficult when the people we interact everyday don’t support us; because truth is, it is difficult trying to remain strong in faith when everyone else is a cynic.

“Why do you still believe in God?” A sceptic asks. “He is not real.”

“He is real,” a believer argues.

“Where was he when I lost my job? Or when I got kicked out of my house by the landlord because I couldn’t afford the rent? Where was he?” The sceptic questions.

When confronted with such scepticism, a believer tries to answer all those questions in a way that will help the doubter understand God is real and His intention isn’t for people to just suffer futilely. But what happens when that faith is the sole cause of one’s misery?

What if someone told you, who believes in God strongly, all the problems you have would cease if you did one little thing; if you denounced God? That if you stopped believing in Him, all those who hate you will love you and you will be popular. Would you do it?

That is the kind of life Jeremiah lived. His life was particularly difficult because he continued to believe in God, when those around him were opposed to it.

Suffering is part of a Christian’s life. Jesus suffered in the hands of men before He was eventually nailed on the cross and from His Passion, we’re reminded to persevere when we find ourselves enshrouded in misery.

When He was calling His disciples He told them, “If anyone wants to come with me he must forget himself, take up his cross everyday, and follow me.” (Luke 9: 23) He wanted them to know being His followers wouldn’t be an easy thing. They would be persecuted and killed for believing in Him.

Just like the Martins sang, He didn’t promise we wouldn’t suffer; but He promised to always be there; to see us through the storm. Believing in God doesn’t mean one has it easy; it only means one goes through each day fighting, hoping God will make it all fine. So don’t feel deceived if you pray every day and life still feels unbearable.

In the world we live in today, people are guided by the ‘If you can’t beat them, join them’ mantra. So if Jeremiah lived in this century, he would have denounced God-hypothetically- just so he could be happy. That mantra however, as seen from Jeremiah’s life experiences, is not the attitude a Christian should adopt. If you can’t beat them, keep trying until you finally succeed.

It’s only by being persistent that we pass tests, and from that triumph we get testimonies. So whatever your situation in life, don’t give up; and don’t give in to pressure. Do what’s right, and God, the faithful Lord He is, will grant you that victory.

We are all sinners

do not judge2

Have you ever felt judged? Feeling as if you have been pushed to a corner, all fingers pointed at you. I can barely count the numbers of times I have felt judged. At the same time, I also know there are times I judge, so I put others in the same hurtful place; that same place I don’t like finding myself in.

Why is it so easy for someone to judge others, when they themselves don’t like being judged?

Human beings are so judgemental; that’s something I always feel when I look at the society we live in. It feels like we are so quick to pinpoint others’ wrongs. According to the Bible, this is what Jesus said about that issue. “Do not judge others, so that God will not judge you, for God will judge you in the same way you judge others, and He will apply to you the same rules you apply to others.

Why then, do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the log in your eye? How dare you say to your brother, ‘Please let me take that speck out of your eye’, when you have a log in your own eye? You hypocrite!

First take the log out of your own eye, and then you will be able to see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” (Matthew 7: 1-5).

The mere fact that we are all human means we are all sinners. And when it comes to the business of wrong doing, no one is better than the other. It would be hypocritical for someone to feel they are lesser sinners, because that brings self-righteousness; a trait which is so destructive. It smothers love and care, so that people are only left nit-picking.

How will I love my neighbour, if I feel she is a prostitute; he’s gay; he is of a different heritage; he’s from a different religion; people from his community are terrorists…? There are so many tags we use to justify our hate towards others. What we need to realize is that the minute we start branding people, being critical of their behaviour, we diminish the chances for love to grow; and last I checked, where love is scarce, dreadful things happen.

Christianity as a religion is based on the birth and death of Jesus Christ; but the latter mainly. He suffered on the cross for us, and died so that mankind would be saved, from sin. It is a difficult thing for someone to die for a righteous person. It may even be that someone might dare to die for a good person. But God has shown us how much He loves us-it was while we were still sinners that Christ died for us. By His sacrificial death, we are now put right with God. (Romans 5: 6-9).

If we all were not sinners, why would God feel the need to sacrifice His only begotten son? When we read the Bible, we get an idea of what was actually done to Jesus during His passion, but when it’s broken down into precise details, it’s stupefying. The death of Christ was clearly beyond any human mind’s comprehension.

He was subjected to the ill-treatment of people who didn’t believe in Him; people who took His words for granted, mocking Him like He was just another mad man; people who treated Him like He was a sinner, yet He was the holiest of us all, and accused Him of blasphemy.

The way I see it, if Jesus accepted to die on the cross, because He knew what was coming to Him, it’s because He knew we needed to be saved. Why? Because we are all sinners! We may not all be thieves, rapists, murderers…etc. but we are sinners regardless.

Some of the wrongs we commit might not even be serious enough to be punishable by law, but whatever the wrong, we are sinners. And this is something we need to remember always before we go out acting like we are our brothers’ judges. If we think our brothers have specks in their eyes, then that’s nothing compared to the logs in our own eyes.

As a child I always heard that ‘if you draw the sword, you will die by the sword’. A deeper translation of that would be, we will suffer the same fate we condemn others to. With this in mind, we need to reflect on our actions as individuals, and imagine how it would be if we were judged the same way we judge others.

do not judge

Sometimes it’s not even about the things we do that are legally wrong, but about those small things we do that cause others so much misery. For instance, a young girl from a poor family marries into a rich family and when she is all rich she forgets her poor background, and when her own daughter is old enough to marry, she forbids her from marrying a poor guy.

That leaves me wondering, what would have happened had the rich guy, who married the poor girl, looked down on her because she was poor? Would that woman have become rich in the first place? Would she have the clout that gives her the courage to ask her daughter not to marry a poor man?

Walk a mile in someone’s shoes; that is the best way to understand what someone else is going through. When we imagine ourselves in other people’s situations, we will atleast get an inkling of how it feels to go through what they are going through; and when we understand that, we won’t judge as much/at all for that matter.

Do not feel rejected; He loves you

Fifteenth station-Jesus is risen from the dead

ALLELUYAH! ALLELUYAH! ALLELUYAH! Christ is risen from the dead!

Christians all over the world are celebrating the resurrection of Christ. After the lent season, which is essentially a solemn period, now we are in celebration mode.

Christmas and Easter are the two most important feasts in a Christian’s life. The former is fundamental because we celebrate the birth of Christ, and the latter because we commemorate His death and resurrection. Easter is more important though.

So much has been said/written about this whole dying and resurrecting thing; one article caught my eye though. The writer talked about man’s origin from a scientist’s perspective; the evolution theory seeks to explain where man came from. To them it’s all about physics and chemistry. They say the genesis story is all a myth.

Science can explain it all, right? The day the sun stood still and the moon stopped so Joshua and his army could fight; the dividing of the Red Sea during the Exodus, when Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt and Pharaoh’s men drowned… but what about the resurrection of Christ? The gap between life and death? Christ’s ascension? Is it all a myth?

The resurrection of Christ is the basis on which Christian faith is founded. During mass, bread and wine are consecrated as a re-enactment of the last supper. Jesus in His words said, “Do this in memory of me.” Christians faithfully follow His will. And the mystery of faith, ‘Dying You destroyed our death, rising You restored our life, Lord Jesus come in glory.” See, it’s all founded on His resurrection. If He didn’t come back to life, people would have no hope of life after death.

Many non-believers think of death as the ultimate end of a person’s life. Christian doctrines however, teach that death is only the beginning of eternal life. All this we believe because Jesus Christ died and resurrected.

Naysayers doubt Christ resurrected. From the scriptures though, it’s clearly evident He rose from the dead. Firstly, the tomb, which was guarded by roman soldiers, afraid that His disciples would steal His body, was opened. Early Sunday morning, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been taken away from the entrance. (John 20: 1).

Secondly, the soldiers who guarded the tomb went back and told the chief priests everything that happened. The chief priests met with the elders and made their plan; they gave a large sum of money to the soldiers and said, “You are to say that His disciples came during the night and stole His body while you were asleep. And if the governor should hear the story we will convince him that you are innocent and you will have nothing to worry about.”

The guards took the money and did what they were told to do. And so that is the report spread around by the Jews to this very day. (Matthew 28: 11-15).

Thirdly, doubting Thomas’ experience confirms further that Jesus resurrected: He was not with them when Jesus came. When the other disciples told him they had seen Jesus, he said, “Unless I see the scars of the nails in his hands and put my finger on those scars and my hand in His side, I will not believe.”

A week later, the disciples were together again indoors and Thomas was with them. The doors were locked, but Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” Then He said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands; then reach out your hand and put it in my side. Stop your doubting and believe me!”

Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God.”

Jesus said to Him, “Do you believe because you see me? Happy are those who believe without seeing me.” (John 20: 24-29).

These alone are enough evidence for anyone to believe Christ rose from the dead. He conquered death. Whatever your situation, whether in prison, sick, childless, mourning, hungry… do not feel rejected. He loves you! Through his resurrection, He conquered death; a wage of sin committed by our first parents, Adam and Eve. Because of His resurrection, those who believe in Him have nothing to fear.

He destroyed death; man’s greatest enemy. What else can’t He destroy? Your problems and mine are nothing to Him. We only need to take them to Him in prayer. We only need to keep the faith.

Now one would ask, “If He was in deed the Son of the Almighty God, why did he have to die in the first place? Couldn’t God spare Him the excruciating pain?”

Truth is, if God wanted to, He could have spared Jesus the pain. Before Jesus was arrested, He prayed while at the Mount of Olives. “Father,” He said. “If You will, take this cup of suffering away from me. Not My will however, but Your will be done.” (Luke 22: 41). God could have stopped Jesus’ passion, but He didn’t. He, in His infinite wisdom, knew His Son would achieve something greater by dying. Through His death and resurrection, we believe.

When Jesus died, His disciples hid themselves, afraid the same fate would befall them. But after they learned of His resurrection, they went out courageously preaching the things He had taught them (Acts of the Apostles). God knew Jesus’ followers would need something to believe in. He let His son suffer for the sake of mankind. He so loved the world, that He gave His only son. It was all for us.

Christ’s resurrection is a renewal of faith and hope. This Easter, we’re called to be His followers; to believe in God’s undying love.

HAPPY EASTER!