The Gospel of Touch

The place of the Gospel of John relative to the other three Gospels.

Its use in the Orthodox Church in the cycle of readings.

Midnight service of Pascha: We begin with Mark 16:1-8 and that amazing conclusion that trails off into the night: εφοβούντο γαρ. But at the Liturgy that follows we read John 1:1-17 with the climactic affirmation, The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. More properly and literally: The Word became flesh and pitched his tent with us.

stthomasxcIt’s all about touch. The Word became flesh. And now that flesh is the one Thomas is invited to touch – that divine flesh that took upon itself all the pain and suffering of humanity.

When responding to Thomas, Jesus said, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.” He didn’t say, “Blessed are those who have not touched and yet believe.” He couldn’t say that, because that’s what the Christian gospel is all about: it’s all about touch.

The rest of my thoughts today are in the audio clip here:


One Reply to “The Gospel of Touch”

  1. Reblogged this on wendynpatterson and commented:
    I was with the Sunday School yesterday and didn’t hear your sermon. Today, I was able to hear this through the “miracle of technology,” Now, I am calm and receptive and grateful that I was able to receive it. The gritty audacity of Thomas has always perplexed me. I have spent a long time in a church where the whole mystery is outside of my reach and the gritty reality of my life. I am touched.

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