Sunday 26 April 2009

In the graveyard Christ appeared

A hymn by Kim Fabricius

(Tune: Puer nobis)

In the graveyard Christ appeared,
reaching out to Mary,
wiped her tears and calmed her fears –
disciples, they were wary. [Repeat.]

Christ on the Emmaus Road
gave two his attention,
yet another episode
of blind incomprehension.

Jesus in the upper room
late that Sunday evening,
friends still filled with doom and gloom –
they hadn’t got the meaning.

Seven days, and Thomas too,
in doubt and deep dejection,
showed he didn’t have a clue
about the resurrection.

By the lakeside – Christ again! –
after celebration,
questioned Peter there and then
about his dedication.

Still disciples ask today,
“Was it an illusion?”
Holy Spirit, chase away
our muddle and confusion.


Brad East said...

How fortuitous -- I just posted one of your hymns as a Sunday sabbath poem for today. This, no less than that one, is only one more example of your witness to us through your powerful way with words. Thank you Kim!

John Hartley said...

Dear Kim,

Very good, thanks very much.

Actually, the evidence for the resurrection is often held to be four-fold: (i) the empty tomb, (ii) the appearances, (iii) the impact on the disciples' characters and confidences, and (iv) the focus of the preaching of the early church. Maybe the last two go beyond the remit of a hymn like this, but how about some initial verses on the empty tomb?

After all, the best answer to the question in the final verse is the empty tomb. Without the empty tomb, the resurrection appearances can all be written off in one way or another as "just illusions".

Here's a stab ...

Easter's dawning day reveals
a tomb, once filled, now empty!
All in vain were Pilate's seals,
and questions rise aplenty!

Did he swoon and then revive,
to push enormous boulders?
Could he really be alive
though pierced by testing soldiers?

Did the women all forget
the tomb's exact location?
Is he maybe buried yet
awaiting exhumation?

Did some robbers come and hump
his body off for profit?
Surely they would not just dump
the linen wrappings off it?

Did authorities remove
the body for protection?
They'd produce it! That would prove
there'd been no resurrection!

In a Godless universe
the dead stay dead forever.
If he rose, then here's the worst:
this God exists! Oh, bother!

Yours in Christ - JOHN HARTLEY.

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