Here's this week's Bible study blog post for i.ucc.org:
This week’s Bible reading from Acts 9:36-43 tells about the resurrection of a woman named Tabitha – also called Dorcas. Could anything be more important than that?
Dorcas, a disciple, cared for others. When she died, other disciples called for Peter, who prayed and called for her to get up. She did. People saw that she was alive and they believed.
What could be bigger than that? How about all the rulebreaking? Woven into this resurrection account is the reality of broken rules to include of people thought to be on the outside or unworthy of being God’s people.
Dorcas was a disciple. The term used is a feminine form of the Greek word for disciple. It doesn’t downgrade the word – Dorcas was a disciple – no less.
After Dorcas came back to life, Peter went to live in the home of Simon, a tanner. Tanners worked with dead flesh. They were considered unclean and living outside of the law standards. Peter living in his home shows that those who the authorities called “unclean” were worthy of God’s unconditional love.
Women . . . Tanners . . . everyone is included. What wonderful rulebreaking! Is that bigger than Dorcas’ resurrection?