“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. – St Matthew
Scripture Text: (ACTS 4:13-21)
Observing the boldness of Peter and John
and perceiving them to be uneducated, ordinary men,
the leaders, elders, and scribes were amazed,
and they recognized them as the companions of Jesus.
Then when they saw the man who had been cured standing there with them,
they could say nothing in reply.
So they ordered them to leave the Sanhedrin,
and conferred with one another, saying,
“What are we to do with these men?
Everyone living in Jerusalem knows that a remarkable sign
was done through them, and we cannot deny it.
But so that it may not be spread any further among the people,
let us give them a stern warning
never again to speak to anyone in this name.”
So they called them back
and ordered them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus.
Peter and John, however, said to them in reply,
“Whether it is right in the sight of God
for us to obey you rather than God, you be the judges.
It is impossible for us not to speak about what we have seen and heard.”
After threatening them further,
they released them,
finding no way to punish them,
on account of the people who were all praising God
for what had happened.
Do we really believe?
We who are sure that we have a much better hold on religion after centuries upon centuries of religious experience and clarification and living a faith which is not new to our families or our country? Are we satisfied with being polite and nice and doing what is convenient? Or do we let the world see him alive and at work in us and through us? Are we living the daring and demanding life which Christ calls us to? Or are we keeping Jesus in the tomb?
If Jesus is indeed risen, if he is not only still alive but even more alive than he ever had been in this world, if he comes personally and lovingly to us every time we celebrate the Eucharist, why is that not more evident in the way we live?
This is still a world of sin, crime, and grief, waiting for the Kingdom of God to appear in its fullness. The world is waiting for a complete proclamation of the Good News. Is it us that it awaits, waiting for us to be the people we claim to be and that God calls us to be, his lights in this darkness?
Are we keeping Jesus in the tomb?