"oh brother, where art thou?"
"Go to My brothers…" —John 20:17
The above verse is the first time in the Gospels that Jesus specifically calls His apostles "brothers." Jesus' Father can now become the Father of the apostles and of us because He will now be able to give them the Holy Spirit. The Spirit comes from the Father. Thus Jesus, Who ascends to His Father, knows that His disciples can be re-born as God's children (see Jn 3:5), and therefore, literally be His brothers and sisters, children of the same Father. The apostles had done the will of God even through the cross. They were trying their best to remain together as His community. And so Jesus rewards them by telling them that His Father and God was their Father and God. What a privilege to be able to call the God Who created the universe our Father!
When we carry our crosses and walk directly through Calvary, Jesus has risen blessings in store for us that make us consider the sufferings we must endure as nothing (Rm 8:18). In Lent 2014, Pope Francis spoke of Christians who choose to live a "Lent without Easter" existence. He meant that they focus on various aspects of the Christian life, such as the cross, suffering, renunciation, but neglect to rejoice and be glad in the risen life Jesus came to inaugurate. The Pope said that these Christians didn't let the joy of the risen Jesus transform their hearts or smiles. They didn't receive their reward in full (see 2 Jn 8).
Be Jesus' brother or sister in its fullest meaning. Rejoice and be glad in the risen Savior. Jesus is risen. Alleluia!
Prayer: "I have seen the Lord!" (Jn 20:18)
Promise: "You will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." —Acts 2:38
Praise: Praise You, risen Lord Jesus, our Brother. Thank You for preparing our family reunion with the Father.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, September 28, 2015
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