Thursday, 28 July 2016

The tragedy of Calvary. Part 160.

The tragedy of Calvary: or the minute details of Christ's life from Palm Sunday morning till the resurrection and ascension taken from prophecy, history, revelations and ancient writings by Meagher, Jas. L. (James Luke), 1848-1920

As the guards stricken down with fear lay on the ground around, and while Mary is running up the Sion Street he appeared to the other women. "And behold Jesus met them, saying: 'All hail.' But they come up and took hold of his feet and worshipped him. Then Jesus said to them. 'Be not afraid. Go, tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, there they shall see me.'" (Matt, xxviii. 9,10.)

He appeared to Simon Peter. But the Gospels tell us nothing of the circumstances. But St. Paul writes " That he was seen by Cephas and after that by the eleven. (I. Cor., xv. 5.)

Simon and Cleophas, two disciples, (Origen and Cyril of Alexandria in Luke xxiv. 13.) lost all faith and hope in him when they saw him dead and buried, and they.were going home to Emmaus, "Warm Springs." They had concluded to give up their vocation and devote themselves to business in that city, sixty furlongs away, later rebuilt by Julius Africanus and named Nicopolis, which now the Arabs call Culonieh. (See Josephus, Jewish Wars, B, vii., C. vii., n. 6.) They were talking on the road of the terrible scenes of the last few days. "Jesus himself also drew near and went with them." (Luke xxiv, 15.) But they did not know him. He asked them what they were talking about. And they told him about Jesus, his death and funeral, and that they heard a rumor from the women say he had risen from the tomb. "O foolish and slow of heart to believe all the things which the prophets have spoken. Ought not Christ to have suffered these things and so to have entered into his glory ? And beginning from Moses and all the prophets, he expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things that were concerning him." ( Luke xxiv. 25, 26.)

Thus they talked till they drew near the walls of the little city. And he made as though he would go on farther. But they pressed him to stay with them, for evening was nigh. He went in and they knew him in the breaking of bread. Then he vanished. And they said to each other : " Was not our heart burning within us, whilst he was speaking in the way and opening to us the Scriptures ? " He knew they were giving up their call; that they had made up their minds to reject their vocation ; that they would be lost to heaven, and he took this way of bringing them back to him and to his discipleship. They returned to Jerusalem, later converted nations and died martyrs.

Going into the Cenacle, where they found ten Apostles gathered, the women told them the Lord appeared to them on the way, while the Apostles told he had appeared to Peter. As they were discussing the happy news, Jesus appeared, saying: " Peace be to you, it is I, fear not." But they were troubled and affrighted, supposed they saw a spirit. And he said to them: 'Why are you troubled, and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? See my hands and my feet, feel and see, for a spirit hath not flesh and bones as you see me to have. And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet.' " (Luke xxiv.)

Thomas the Twin was not there, and when he returned they told him the story. But he would not believe. With Jewish enemies, headstrong Rabbis, Scribes and Pharisees in the Holy City, the Lord's followers would be exposed to ridicule, argument, arrest and death, In the quiet retreat of Galilee, he could give them his final instructions for the founding of the Church, the preaching of the Gospel.

Some time afterwards, they went down to Galilee, as directed, where they passed the Sabbath. The first day of the week, ten Apostles gathered in a room, the doors being shut, when the Lord appeared to them.

"Jesus came and stood in the midst and said: 'Peace be to you. As the Father hath sent me, I also send you.' When he said this he breathed on them and he said to them, 'Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whose sins you shall forgive they are forgiven them, and whose sins you shall retain they are retained.'" (John xx. 21-23)

For some reason Thomas was not with them, and when he came they told him. But he would not believe till he had seen for himself, for he was not present at the other times the Lord appeared to the others. Eight days passed and they were all together, Thomas with them, when Jesus stood in their midst and said to Thomas. " Put in thy finger hither, and see my hands, and bring hither thy hand and put it in my side, and be not incredulous but faithful." Thomas answered and said to him, " My Lord and my God." (John xx, 26-28)