(Easter Message from the Hon. Treasurer of the Church of South India)
The crucifixion and the death of Jesus Christ is the biggest example of injustice. It stands for all injustice. It was a judicial murder like thousands of others across the globe, and we can clearly say that the values Jesus stood for are still relevant in the current society too. These values, which are highlighted by Jesus Christ and eventually he laid down his life for, should be the driving force of the Christian society across the world.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ sets the seal of God's endorsement on what Jesus stood for and assures us of his living companionship to support us in the same struggle. Jesus proclaimed the arrival of the new age of the reign of God; that he himself possessed an intense intuitive awareness of the reality and presence of God. Jesus, by his life and ultimately by his resurrection proved his preferential option for the vulnerable and the marginalised in the society. He marked a new era of the victories of the vulnerable over the majoritarian hegemonies and manipulative political systems. The light of a new day was spreading along with the radiant the soldiers saw during the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The light of a new day is spreading across the sky, though its sun has not yet risen. The twilight is visible. Yet the sunrise is now so near and so certain that it is time already to start living the life of a new day, the life of the new age. The resurrection of Jesus is the twilight of the fact that the messianic age is so near.
Since it is God's new age and the time of God's reign, to live in its anticipation of its arrival means to treat everybody here and now as God treats people. This is a call for doing justice and living justice. Resurrection is a call for love and justice. The nearness of the kingdom was the nearness of God. The resurrection suggests us to be merciful to others as the heavenly Father is merciful to us. Let there be no limit to your goodness as there is no limit to our Father's goodness. The resurrection guides us towards a new law of love, kindness, and fellowship, because resurrection was a victory over hatred, exclusion, and hegemony.
As Jesus taught, so he lived. His acceptance of 'unacceptable' was a deliberate doing of what he saw the Father doing. His meals shared with 'sinners' and outcasts were a reflection of his own perception of God as a father who prepares a feast to welcome his erring son. Jesus, by his life and death, showed that he was aiming at an alternative society. The resurrection symbolises that alternative way of life. The resurrection reminds us a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies. This kernel of wheat, Jesus Christ, produces many seeds. The resurrection of Jesus as a new sapling is an indicator to a new world order. Many seeds are now coming into life. Death has no sting anymore. The seeds of love, equity and compassion come into life.
Jesus dies for justice rooted in love. He dies for justice rooted in the nature of God. He dies for the incomparable value of the individual person, derived from the human capacity for relationship with other persons and with God which is what we mean by the image of God. He died and resurrected to restore the freedom and responsibility which is the necessary condition of for love. Autocracy, mobocracy, communalism, casteism, capitalism and racism are the forces those try to kill freedom and thus the existence of love. The resurrection of Jesus was a victory over these evil forces of his time. And, divinely, his resurrection stands against these forces in every moment of the history of human beings.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ calls us for a change in our lives. Old man/woman in us should die. We should be re-born with new visions and missions for a new heaven and new earth. Love and equality should be the norms of this new era. This visions and missions should be operated in the tangible world around us. That is the Christian call.
Let there be a resurrection experience in our lives too!
Have a blessed Easter!
Adv. Robert Bruce,
Hon. Treasurer, CSI and CSITA.