N. T. Wright in his book “Surprised by Scripture” makes the point that John’s Gospel echoes Genesis 1, both begin, “In the beginning.” On the sixth day, Friday, of the first week of creation God created humankind in his own image. On the Friday in John’s story Pontius Pilate says of Jesus, “Here’s the man!” By evening of Friday, Jesus declares what God declared in Genesis 1, “It is finished.” It’s done. The work of creation was finished, as the Son has finished the work of redemption. On the seventh day, Saturday, God rested from all his work he had done, even as God in the flesh rests from all his work in the tomb. Then on the first day of the week, Sunday, the eighth day, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and found it empty. This was the first day of God’s new world, God’s new creation. In Genesis 1, humankind carrying the image of God, and with the Holy Spirit’s presence are sent out as God’s agents to bring all the earth under God’s order of things. So, on this first day of the new creation Jesus breaths on his followers giving them the presence of the Holy Spirit to set things right through the forgiveness of sins. Though the resurrection of Jesus is hard to believe, as Thomas demonstrates, nevertheless Jesus followers have the job of announcing God’s peace to the world, calling the world not to be faithless, but to believe. With that faith in the Christ, the Son of God, risen from the dead all may have life in his name.
The culmination of all the hopes and dreams of all the world is not found in a form of government, nor in a political leader or military general, but when in God’s wisdom Jesus was raised to new life. God’s new creation was established and now Jesus has the ultimate authority over heaven and earth and all its creatures.