While Peter and John were speaking to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came to them, much annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming that in Jesus there is the resurrection of the dead. So they arrested them and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening. But many of those who heard the word believed; and they numbered about five thousand.
The next day their rulers, elders, and scribes assembled in Jerusalem, with Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family. When they had made the prisoners stand in their midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?”
Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, if we are questioned today because of a good deed done to someone who was sick and are asked how this man has been healed, let it be known to all of you, and to all the people of Israel, that this man is standing before you in good health by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead.
This Jesus is ‘the stone that was rejected by you, the builders; it has become the cornerstone.’ There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
In pre-modern construction, according to Encyclopedia Britannica, “Buildings were laid out with astronomical precision in relation to points of the compass, with emphasis on the corners. Cornerstones symbolized ‘seeds’ from which buildings would germinate and rise.’”
Peter in today’s reading tells those who questioned the teachings that John and Peter proclaimed in the temple, “This Jesus is ‘the stone that was rejected by you, the builders; it has become the cornerstone.’”
The germination and rise of the seed that Jesus planted is the story that is told in the Acts of the Apostles by the early disciples. Their story testifies to how the Holy Spirit moved and guided them as it did Peter as he faced his inquisitors “filled with the Holy Spirit.” Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you to see what are your “acts” as a disciple that testify to Jesus as your cornerstone.
—Fr. Chris Manahan, SJ, is director of the Jesuit Retreat House on Lake Winnebago, near Oshkosh, WI.
Holy Spirit, rest in me today and guide me. Help me see where you are working within me, within others, and within the world around me. Strengthen my love of God, my love of neighbor, and my love of myself when it grows weak. Mark for me the path to follow Jesus so that I may see the way more clearly. Amen.
—Fr. Chris Manahan, SJPlease share the Good Word with your friends!