We have known the Father through the Son. Indeed, Jesus now tells the disciples that they have actually seen God the Father. This is the vision of faith, and of our knowledge, as Jesus tells us that he is in the Father and the Father in him. The unknowable, in this life to our natural senses, has become a knowable truth of faith [ … ]
Jesus sees that what he has so far said to the disciples during the Last Supper has left them troubled. His speaking of Peter’s imminent denial must have been especially upsetting. In these verses, Jesus now reassures the disciples. They will come to heaven, just as we all may. ‘In my Father’s house are many mansions.’ No matter our shortcomings, through faith we can find that there is a place in heaven prepared especially for us [ … ]
John 13: 16-20 16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him. [ … ]
Jesus teaches his listeners the parable of the unjust judge in order to affirm for them the efficacy of prayer. If even this unrighteous judge will grant the widow’s request, he tells us, how much more will God vindicate his elect, and speedily. We are called upon by Jesus to live a life of prayer – to express and to strengthen our faith through prayer and to channel our ever enriched faith into further prayer. This is the way to orient our lives to God [ … ]
Today’s Bible verses conclude the first half of John’s Gospel, known as the Book of Signs. The verses mark the end of Christ’s public ministry. He will go on, through the Last Supper, to teach his disciples, and then to endure his Passion and crucifixion. The verses bring together Christ’s teaching to now. Key, fundamental themes are restated. Christ and the Father are one. To believe in Jesus is to believe in God. To see Jesus is to see God [ … ]
The Feast of the Dedication commemorates the episode in Jewish history, as recorded in Maccabees, when, in the year 165 BC, after he had liberated Jerusalem from the control of the Seleucid kings of Syria, Judas Maccabeus cleansed the Temple of the profanations of Antiochus Epiphanes. Falling toward the end of the year, it is also known as the Festival of Lights, because it was the custom to place lamps, signifying the Law, in the windows of houses [ … ]
Christ offers himself to the people as the good shepherd, recalling a favourite theme of Old Testament prophecy. Priests and kings are so described, and indeed God is spoken of as a shepherd, as we hear, for example, in Psalm 23:
THE Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake [ … ]
Jesus does not change his message in order to please people, even when that message proves unpalatable. He has not come to be all things to all men, but instead to tell us the truth. It is up to us, through faith, to hear and to understand and to accept Jesus’ teachings, and to know that our salvation is through him [ … ]
Jesus once more contrasts the gift of his own body with the manna given to the Israelites to eat during the Exodus, which bread of heaven they ate and yet they still went on to die. Christ is the living bread. He is the bread that has come from heaven. Christ’s origin in heaven is, as John tells us, what sets him apart and enables our redemption. Jesus explains: just as he lives because of the Father, so we live through Christ. We are called to share in his supper and so to have life eternal [ … ]
The Jewish authorities have begun to take note of Jesus. While Jesus has attracted the people, now ‘the Jews’, a term which in John’s Gospel is often used to refer to the Jewish authorities, are beginning to murmur against him. Jesus’ relationship with the Jews is to become increasingly tense [ … ]