The Lord’s command, “Do not weep,” certainly seems frustrating – as though there were a more obvious appropriate response. In the past healings we’ve seen in Luke’s Gospel, some kind of request was made – Jesus was asked to heal. In today’s Gospel, we see that the tears of a mother weeping over the death of her only son is stronger and more pertinent than the various forms of intercession. Jesus does not wait for her to ask something of Him: her tears and her devastation are enough to move Him. God does not remain unmoved by our suffering or grief until we make some kind of effort to pray. The Word became flesh so that flesh itself might become instrumental in our healing and our relationship with God. The young man is brought back to life in the flesh at the mere touch of Jesus. That contact, that physical gesture, brought the full power of the Word of Life to bear on the flesh of the dead.
Saint Thomas the Apostle is incorporated into the revelation of Jesus’ resurrection in a particularly relevant way. There was one, even among the Apostles, who didn’t seem to receive everything he needed to become fully convinced of the resurrection. If all the other Apostles received a visit from the risen Christ, why should he be expected to believe without that visit? We should try to understand the heart of Saint Thomas: if the Lord and Teacher he followed for years seems to have excluded him, there must be some degree of hurt or incomprehension. “I thought Jesus loved me, why did He appear to everyone else while I was away?”
The burning bush is one of the most important images of God throughout revelation. Marriage is the most fundamental institution created by God: before even the fall of humanity. Jesus draws a striking parallel between the two when he explains the resurrection to the Sadducees. The resurrection is fullness of life, life beyond death, life that defeats death entirely. Marriage is seen as this kind of fullness of human life – as full as we can understand it here below. The Sadducees would argue that if marriage no longer makes sense at the resurrection, then there is a fullness of life that can never be recovered after death. Marriage is supposed to produce a certain oneness: “the two shall become one flesh.” But when one dies, the other does not necessarily die and must continue living their human life as best they can – sometimes remarrying in an attempt to recover that fullness of life. What institution will replace marriage for the resurrected?