May 5, 2019

Sermon – Thomas Sunday 2019

Preacher:

Pastor’s Sermon
Thomas Sunday
By V. Rev. Timothy Baclig
May 05, 2019

Christ is risen! Truly He is risen! ! المسیح قام! حقًا قام
Today’s Gospel, highlights the experience of Thomas. The many lessons
that our Lord taught the disciples prior to His passion began to be brought back to their remembrance in His numerous appearances, which took place in the fortyday period following His Resurrection, prior to his Ascension.

The appearance of our Lord mentioned in today’s Gospel is one of eleven
Gospel readings heard in the early Orthros service each Sunday, called “The
Eothinon” Gospels. Each Sunday, the Eothinon Gospel announces the
Resurrection before the Divine Liturgy, similar to the Gospel read at the doors of the Church during the “Rush Procession” at the midnight service before the
Liturgy.

The experience of the Apostle Thomas was unique. It is very possible that
Thomas, more than any of the other Apostles was the one who actually heard what
the Lord was saying before his death. It just sounded impossible that a Messiah,
who was expected to restore the Kingdom of Israel, would face such a tragic
death. Last night’s Vespers service includes a section that helps us to understand what took place. In a section of the Apostika we hear: “What a miraculous wonder, that a lack of faith became a conviction of faith…” “…the obstinate soul turned with fervor to true faith, ‘My Lord, and my God.’”

The transformation, which began taking place among the disciples, was
significant; significant because once the disciples experienced a personal dawning and illumination they were ignited with faith and love to act with conviction.
Until this happened nothing would have changed. The Lord who appeared in their
midst imparted His Spirit to them (John 20:22). The content of the Gospel
message that our Lord taught them had become their own message. It was the
good news of the forgiveness of sins that is at the very heart of the Paschal
message.

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