April 18 2022 Gospel Reading and Reflection: Matthew 28:8-15

A reading from the gospel according to Matthew 28:8-15:

8 Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went away quickly from the tomb, fearful yet overjoyed, and ran to announce the news to his disciples.
9 And behold, Jesus met them on their way and greeted them. They approached, embraced his feet, and did him homage.
10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
11 While they were going, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had happened.
12 The chief priests assembled with the elders and took counsel; then they gave a large sum of money to the soldiers,
13 telling them, “You are to say, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him while we were asleep.’
14 And if this gets to the ears of the governor, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.”
15 The soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has circulated among the Jews to the present day.

Reflection: Truth and Bribery

1. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were filled with both fear and joy as they ran away from the tomb to announce the good news of the resurrection to others. Those were dangerous times. The environment was not conducive for truth telling yet the women were ready and enthusiastic. They can’t wait a minute to tell the apostles what they found out: The tomb is empty because the Lord was not there. He has risen!

2. “Do not be afraid” and “Fear not” are a repetitive refrain in the bible. In fact, some people claimed the advice appears 365 times, one for each and every day of the year. Whatever the number is, the scripture wants to convey the importance of courage. We need it so that we will not waiver in our faith. Mary Magdalene and her companion needed it in the face of danger. Although God is powerful, the enemy also has the power not only to prevent us from telling the truth but also to destroy our faith.

3. The soldiers were bribed to lie about the empty tomb. Bribery is an old crime. Today, it is still the modus operandi of those who want to suppress the truth and a lot of people easily fall prey to this devilish act. Yet the truth can never be hidden (Luke 8:17). And so billions of people have come to believe in Jesus. That He is alive is true and anyone who has an encounter with Him can attest to it.

4. The chief priests and the elders were supposed to be the chief exponents of truthful living. It is pathetic that they have to resort to bribery to hide the truth. When those in power include lies to hold on to their position, sooner or later they will fall. On the other hand, when truth prevails, freedom is achieved (John 8:32).

Gospel Reading and Reflection for April 18 2022
Gospel Reading and Reflection for April 18, 2022

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