31When he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. 32If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. 33Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come.’ 34I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. 35By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
Picture is of Poster entitled, "Beloved of God," and was printed for 73rd General Convention of the Episcopal Church.
A Little Bit for Everyone
Oremus online text: http://bible.oremus.org/?passage=John+13:1-35&vnum=yes&version=nrsv
Textweek general resources: http://www.textweek.com/yearc/easterc5.htm
Textweek resources for John’s Gospel this Sunday: http://www.textweek.com/mkjnacts/jn13.htm
Chris Haslam’s commentary: http://montreal.anglican.org/comments/archive/ceas5l.shtml
Some interesting articles on this passage:
William Loader’s commentary: http://wwwstaff.murdoch.edu.au/~loader/LkEaster5.htm
Brian McGowan (Anglican from Australia): http://www.angelfire.com/journal2/laterallyluke/LLKJN133135EAST5.html
Margaret Guenther: http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1058/is_n15_v112/ai_16947310/
Sermon by John Claypool: http://www.csec.org/csec/sermon/claypool_3919.htm
This weeks movie concordance from textweek: http://www.textweek.com/movies/eucharist.htm
Loving god, the promise of the new Jerusalem is your home among us. Already in the new commandment of love you have begun to make all things new. As Jesus loved us, so we would love, that in the love we have for one another a new heaven and a new earth may dawn. We ask this through the Lord Jesus, our Passover and our Peace, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen.
From Prayers for Sunday and Seasons, Year C, Peter J. Scagnelli, LTP, 1992.
There are a number of very important theological and missional points to be considered in these last instructions to his disciples.
The first of these phrases is, “God has been glorified.” The glory of God is the primary, the ultimate, work of Jesus Christ. He is modeling for all humanity the work we are to undertake as creatures of God, and making it clear that our disobedience to this work dishonors our creator. “Glory”, according to Raymond Brown, “involves a visible manifestation of God’s majesty in acts of power.” (RB, John, Anchor Bible, vol 2, 606) This scriptural and textual view is important theologically. We, the creatures of God, are to work on God’s behalf. We are, through our lives as disciples of the most high God, are to manifest God’s majesty in the living out of our lives and in our relationships with one another.
The Biblical scholar George B. Caird (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G._B._Caird) wrote this about the understanding of this word and its meaning within the New Testament, and its meaning for theology: “Through Jesus God is held in honor by men.” “God is honored by Jesus,” through his obedience to God’s will. “God has won honor for himself in Jesus.” And, “God has revealed his glory in Jesus.” (Brown, 606)
Brown reminds us that Origen moved this concept towards Gnosticism because he associated it with knowing God. But the more ancient continuum throughout scripture upholds the idea that the purpose of all creation and humans especially, is to glorify God in word, action, and deed.
In verse 33 Jesus remarks to them, calling them children – as in his later greeting on the beach, and says that he will not be with them long. Moreover, that the work and the journey he is about to take is not for them, but for him alone.
Jesus gives this commandment 18 times in the last discourse in John. The statement is clear: Love one another.
We are to love one another as Jesus loves us. And the word chosen here is “must.” We must love as Jesus loved. This is our commandment. This is how we are to be known: as the ones who love one another.
Raymond Brown points out that over time Christian Apologists, all, “would call upon the impact made by Christian love as a standard argument for the superiority of Christianity.” (607) Today we make the case primarily on other grounds as this is not typically what comes to mind when one thinks about Christians in our culture or globally.
Raymond Brown writes the following:
Yet love is more than a commandment; it is a gift, and like the other gifts of the Christian dispensation it comes from the Father through Jesus to those who believe in him. In xv 9 we hear, “As the Father has love me, so have I loved you”; and both xiii 34 and xv 12 the “as I have love you” emphasizes that Jesus is the source of the Christians’ love for one another. (Only secondarily does it refer to Jesus as the standard of Christian love.) The love that Jesus has for his followers is not only affective but also effective; it brings about their salvation. It is expressed in his laying down his life, an act of love that gives life to men. This is well expressed in Rev I 5: “…the one who loves us and has delivered 9or washed0 us from our sins.” We should also stress that the “love of one another” of which the Johannine Jesus speaks is love between Christians. In our own times a frequent ideal is the love of all men, enunciated in terms of the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man. Such a maxim has some biblical basis in the creation of all men by God, but the idea is not Johannine. For John, God is a Father only to those who believe in His Son and who are begotten as God’s children by the Spirit in Baptism. The “one another” that the Christian is to love is correctly defined in I John iii 14 as “our brothers,” that is those within the community.
It seems to me that the Christian community who is not able to primarily engage in the commandment to love one another will be unable to be a missionary community into a world looking and searching for vessels of God’s love. The church that cannot be a sacrament of God’s love for those within first, and those without second, ceases to reflect the glory of God as intended by God for God’s pleasure, and for humanities mutual benefit, and for the salvation of creation.
The Lambeth Bible Study Method
This Bible study method was introduced by the African Delegation to the Lambeth Conference of the Anglican Church. It is known by both names: "Lambeth" and "African." This method is derived from the practice of Lectio Divina. The entire process should take about 30 minutes.
Question #5: "Briefly identify where this passage touches their life today," can change based upon the lesson. Find lesson oriented questions at this website: http://www.dcdiocese.org/word-working-second-question
Opening Prayer: O Blessed Lord, who caused all Holy Scripture to be written for our learning. Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them that we may embrace and hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
1. One person reads passage. This person then invites a member of the group to begin the process.
2. Each person briefly identifies the word or phrase that catches their attention then invites another person to share.
3. Each shares the word or phrase until all have shared or passed using the same invitation method.
4. The passage is read a second time, preferably from a different translation. The reader then invites a person in the group to begin the process.
5. Each person briefly identifies where this passage touches their life today, and then invites someone who has not shared yet.
6. The passage is read a third time, also from another translation, and the reader invites a person to start the process.
7. Each person responds to the questions, "What does God want me to do, to be or to change?"
8. The group stands up in a circle and holds hands. One person initiates the prayer “I thank God today for …” and “I ask God today for…” The prayer goes around the circle by squeezing the hand to your right.
9. When the circle is fulfilled, the person who initiated the prayer starts the Lord’s Prayer, “Our father…”