Welcome to Monday’s podcast. My name is Tom Finnemore and I’m part of the team here at STC. I have the honour on picking up the baton from the Godfather of podcasts, Mr James Brown, who left us with that wonderful thought on Friday: ‘Despite the circumstances God’s care will reach us…’
Today we continue towards the end of Luke’s gospel. Today our reading is Luke 24: 1-12 but today I’m going to focus on verses 10-11:
It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense.
I had a conversation recently with a man who had worked in the advertising world. He shared a fascinating story of his road back to faith in God and his new journey towards church leadership. He said some something really interesting: the church has lost confidence. He said if the ‘world’ really knew what goes on inside some churches I think they would be genuinely interested – it might provoke an interest. It was really fascinating to hear someone from a professional marketing background make some observations about how the church (big picture) could do with some much needed better PR.
Today’s passages are really famous – the resurrection of Jesus. One of the most profound realities of the Christian faith: Jesus raised from the dead. That’s why Easter Sunday is a celebration – a party – of the ultimate hope we profess – is based on this reality: Jesus Christ raised from the dead which changes everything. A friend told me last week that her mum has terminal cancer – awful news, but she said her Mum has a real peace – because Jesus’ resurrection tells us that death isn’t the end.
There’s so much amazing stuff in today’s reading but I want to think about one particular thing that we could easily miss. The first people to see the resurrected Jesus were women.
Jewish women were treated better than Roman women but that’s not saying much. Women were treated as property. That’s why Jesus’ view of women and in fact children was so radically countercultural.
For the resurrected Son of God to reveal the incredible eternal truth of resurrection to female disciples is quite literally unbelievable. You just wouldn’t do it – you’d find the most believable & credible people.
Jesus doesn’t. The testimony of women wasn’t valid in civic structures and in this story as the women recount their story of meeting the risen Jesus they’re dismissed.
But Jesus trusts these women who had little significance in the eyes of society, , who were overlooked by the other disciples – he chooses them with the most incredible news ever…
Perhaps today you’re facing Monday feeling like – I haven’t got much to bring to the party – I’m just about keeping on top of life. Everyone else seems so much better – so much more sorted.
God chooses you today. He has something for each of us to do – we have the opportunity to be a blessing to someone else – to be God’s witness. So as you walk into school or uni go in the knowledge that God reveals himself not just to those who have it all together but if the biblical witness is anything to go by – often those who don’t. I find that hugely encouraging. If God chooses to reveal the greatest truth in history to people who are overlooked and shunned – he will probably want to use you and me this day.
Oh Lord, thank you for your grace. Help us to walk this day with you!
READING: Luke 24:1-12
On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, ‘Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: “The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.”’ Then they remembered his words.
When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.