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For David [King David, King of Israel BC 1010-970] says concerning him [Jesus of Nazareth AD 0-33], "... ... you will not abandon my soul to Hades, or let your Holy One see corruption. You have made known to me the paths of life; you will make me full of gladness with your presence."       Acts 2: 25, 27, 28


Four days ago it was Easter Sunday in Jersey - the anniversary of the day when Jesus of Nazareth rose from the dead.

And nothing really happened here on that day, 23 March ... Nothing to do with this Jesus anyway. 

In particular perhaps, all Jersey tombs were unchanged last Sunday - including what is perhaps Jersey's most impressive tomb - that of Billy Butlin at St John's Cemetery. As was the tomb of my grandparents at St Ouen and that of my parents at St Lawrence.

Thoughts about what happens therein must be quickly banished - corruption is awful. 

It is so, so hard to to have to bear the thought that for century upon century, burials have taken place into Jersey soil - and corruption has consumed, is consuming all.

So outsiders say, "That's Jersey for you - full of corruption."

And Jersey's obvious defence to that is to say - stop talking like that, you're in the same boat, it's no different where you live (and die).

Last week BBC1, by screening "The Passion", helped us all to understand that corruption reigned in Jerusalem in AD 33, and corruption put Jesus to death. And BBC1 daily updates us on AD 2008 corruption world wide.

But exactly seven weeks after Jesus died, one of his key followers, Peter the fisherman from provincial Galilee, was preaching to thousands in Jerusalem, the Capital City. (Jersey/London is a good parallel.)

And, see above, Peter was reminding them that their King David had, 1000 years earlier, written a song that said that he, David, would not see corruption (Psalm 16 in the Hebrew Bible and now in the Christian Bible).

But, said Peter, David's tomb is here with us today (just as we have so many tombs in Jersey today). David did see corruption. What on earth did David mean?

Just this, said Peter: "David being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, he [David] foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ [the Messiah, David's descendant], that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption."

David was speaking about a descendant who would not, in death, see corruption.

There are no tombs in Jersey that lack corruption. Yet Easter Sunday this year passed without anything happening .....

Hold it - perhaps something did happen? 

On Easter Sunday in Jersey, most people in Jersey ignored the one who was killed, was dead and was buried, but saw no corruption. (And most people elsewhere in Europe too.) Surely we're not content with corruption? Surely we want to avoid it?

Peter the provincial fisherman put it succinctly, "Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified." 

‘When this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.'   (Paul writing to Christians in Corinth around AD 55)
 ‘A corrupt judge does not carefully search for the truth.' (Horace, Roman Poet, BC 65-8)
Richard Syvret

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