Contemplating Jesus


Posted on by Lucinda M. Vardey

Jesus’ appearances after his resurrection carried a clear message.  Mistaken for a gardener, a stranger and a ghost, Jesus proved he was none of these by the sharing of food.

Sitting at a table with him was normal before his death, and as the apostles discovered, it was to be hardly different after his death.  Jesus was still teaching the truth of life, not so much through parables, but the story of his body.  Walking with two followers on the road to Emmaus (with whom he later dined – Luke 24:13-35) he also asked for something to eat when he appeared to his disciples through locked doors (Luke24:40-43). His was a body not just glowing with divine light, but imbued with the scars of suffering.  He was not only fully spirit but fully human, revealed by his eating and drinking, and by being physically touched, still in collegial friendship with his disciples as before.

During the Last Supper, when Jesus broke the bread and passed the wine as being his flesh and blood, the power of such a transformation was beyond reasoning.   Often in the scriptures we read of his apostles not understanding and wondering what he meant.  Jesus’ last earthly act of breaking bread and washing feet seemed so simple: as was his broiling fish for breakfast on the shores of the Sea of Tiberias after his resurrection (John 21:1-14).

The risen Jesus was to dissolve the boundaries between spirit and matter and fuse them perfectly in an embodied Truth.  Therein this Truth was not to be devoid of human needs and realities: it embraced the every day. According to Revelations (3.20)) Jesus stands and knocks at the door.  If he’s heard and welcomed, he’ll come in, sit down and ”eat with you and you with me.”

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