Of this we are witnesses

by | Apr 6, 2024 | Presence

The author of life you put to death, but God raised Him from the dead; of this we are witnesses. (Acts 3:15)


The great feast of ancient Judaism, the Feast of Booths or Tabernacles, was eight days in length. Our great feast is Easter, beginning at vigil awaiting Jesus’ resurrection, and then celebrated for eight days. As with the Feast of Booths, both are celebrating the presence of God amongst us. Each day of the feast is the same day, for God transcends all time. 

For Christians, God is more than just Creator and King. He is our Abba, our Father. We are the only religion which has this filial relationship with our Maker. It is through our baptism that we have become His own. 

How poignant that, in the modern Catholic church, this great feast segues into Divine Mercy Sunday. It is an example of how, in each generation, God gives us renewed understanding of the deeper meanings of love and mercy expressed in His Word. Scripture is the final revelation of God; through the saints and magisterium, He graces us with insights into its profundity so that we may grow in wisdom (Cf. CCC 158). The whole of the bible, both old and new testaments, are His declaration of covenantal love for us and witness of His mercy as He continually accepts His children back into that covenant when we stray. 

We weren’t there to physically put Jesus to death 2000 years ago. But we do ‘kill’ our relationship with Him when we allow others to command our attention; when we seek signs and wonders rather than our own forgiveness and mercy; when we allow people, ideals, objects, and rituals (whether secular or religious) to take up too much space in our thoughts and heart. As Fr. Mike Schmitz puts it, “The heart is an idol-making factory, and we can make an idol out of anything, especially out of really good things” (Bible in a Year, day 96, 21:06 min mark). We are the only people who can call out “Abba!”, “Father!”, “Daddy!”. Yet how little time we spend doing so, or sitting with Him in quiet small talk like a child with his Father. 

Did I not tell you that if you believe you will see the glory of God? (John 11:40) 

Of what are we witnesses? We witness His mercy and love every day of our life, and our life witnesses that to others. This filial relationship with our Father manifests in a faith that is grounded in trust, for trust is the outcome of any loving relationship. This trust becomes a ‘witness’ to others of our faith. Rather than being like the faithless dad who said to Jesus, “But if you can do anything…” (Mark 9:22), we like the leper ask our Lord and Savior “If you will…” (Luke 5:12). For Jesus has made clear it is our faith that saves, our knowledge of Him formed in love (Luke 7:50, 8:48, 18:35-42; Mark 5:34; Matthew 9:18-22). We are saved by grace (Romans 3:21-26) through faith (Ephesians 2:8) worked out in love (Ephesians 5:6) (CCC ). A faith that saves must believe in His mercy and love, and trust like the centurion (Matthew 8:5-13). 

“Jesus, I trust in You”. Of this we are witnesses. 

Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam 😊


(Image by Eugeniusz Kazimirowski as dictated by St. Faustina, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

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