Feedback on John 20 from DPE
The first announcement at Easter was a cry of dismay and fear. I think you could build a whole sermon around this one point. I'm reminded of a book by Flannery O'Connor The Violent Bear It Away. The main character is an odd young man who rubs lime in his eyes to blind himself. After he blinds himself he becomes a street preacher. He says that he is the preacher in the church where the "blind don't see, the lame don't walk, and what's dead stays that way." The news that Jesus overcame death is fearful news to those who have everything tied up in the world of death we live in. We become comfortable with our circumstances if life. Even though we do not like them at least we know where we stand with them. We are afraid of new life. This reminds me of the Truman movie. At the end of the movie Truman discovers that he has been living his whole life on a movie set. It is then that he makes it to the end of the set and he is faced with a choice. Does he dare walk through the door to the world on the other side? Or does he stay where it is safe and predictable. Easter invites us to walk through that door to the other side. The sermon makes a distinction between people who make assumptions and people who investigate further - who go to see for themselves? How does this relate to the story at the end of the Gospel where Thomas won't believe until he sees. Jesus said, "Blessed are those who have believed but have not seen." I like the ending of the sermon. The last couple of sentences sum up everything nicely.