Wednesday - Go FishMarch 30, 2016 Elmhurst CRC
Welcome to the Elmhurst CRC Devotional Experience. It’s Wednesday, the fourth day of Easter week Our scripture reading today comes from Luke 24:36-43 While his disciples were talking together, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate it in their presence. When Jesus appeared to his eleven disciples (Judas, now being gone), he greeted them with the words, “Peace be with you.” He knew they would be scared - and anxious - and fearful. God’s peace is the opposite of fear. The disciples mistook Jesus for a ghost at first. What might a resurrected human body actually be like? The disciples were scared of Jesus despite his soothing words and despite the fact that they recognized him. Somehow Jesus must have been both familiar and otherly in his newly resurrected body. He was the same, and very different. To help comfort them, Jesus showed them his hands and feet which still were marked with the wounds of his crucifixion. When they could see truth that it really was Jesus, the light bulb began to go on. They have their “Aha!” or “Eureka!” moment. When the light of truth dawns on them, the Gospel of Luke say that “joy and amazement” began to follow. Fear and anxiety are transformed into joy and amazement in the presence of the resurrected Jesus. The disciples, perhaps wanting a little more proof of Jesus’ identity, gave him a taste test. They share a piece of broiled fish with him... and he eats it. Perhaps they wondered if Jesus’ body was solid enough to eat. The answer: Yes! Even in his resurrected body, Jesus is still one of us. Human. Flesh and blood. Eating. Drinking. Breathing. Sharing his peace. Perhaps you know that the fish is an ancient Christian symbol. The symbol traces back to this moment when that little piece of fish eaten by Jesus demonstrates that he is truly risen and that he is still, truly one of us. Find a dark or dim place nearby. Bring along four sources of light for the fourth day of our experience. As the light begins to push out the darkness, speak these words: “Out of the darkness of the tomb, the light is shining. Jesus is the light of the world.” Share any other Bible stories or references you can think of about fishes … or maybe even about a whale.