"In the present, God gives us a 'tour of heaven' to provide strength until we are completely made whole in God’s future. But, while we are down here waiting, this tour also gives us the audacity to hope against hope and to struggle for healing to come on earth as it is in heaven."John 14:23-29
23Jesus answered him, “Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; and the word that you hear is not mine, but is from the Father who sent me.
25”I have said these things to you while I am still with you. 26But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. 27Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.
28You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I am coming to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I. 29And now I have told you this before it occurs, so that when it does occur, you may believe.
A Little Bit for Everyone
Oremus online text: http://bible.oremus.org/?passage=John+14:23-29&vnum=yes&version=nrsv
Textweek general resources: http://www.textweek.com/yearc/easterc6.htm
Textweek resources for John’s Gospel this Sunday: http://www.textweek.com/mkjnacts/jn14d.htm
Chris Haslam’s commentary: http://montreal.anglican.org/comments/archive/ceas6l.shtml
Some interesting articles on this passage:
William Loader’s commentary: http://wwwstaff.murdoch.edu.au/~loader/LkEaster6.htm
Brian McGowan (Anglican from Australia): http://www.angelfire.com/journal2/laterallyluke/LLKJN142329EAST6.html
Suzanne Guthrie: http://www.religion-online.org/showarticle.asp?title=2125
Sermon by James Somerville: http://www.religion-online.org/showarticle.asp?title=647
Jesus gave us peace. Do not let our hearts be troubled or afraid but send upon all the baptized the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, to remind us of all that Jesus said. So may we keep your word and be counted among those whom you make your home. 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.
We continue our discourse with Jesus’ final teaching to his disciples. We are offered in today’s Gospel Jesus’ response to Judas’ question: how will you reveal yourself to us and not to the whole world?
Jesus’ response is that we, the followers of Jesus, will keep his word. Jesus’ revelation to his followers will in turn be revealed to the world through their action of keeping the word. Raymond Brown prefers keeping my word to keeping my commandment because he believes Jesus is speaking about the Spirit of Truth and its indwelling which leads the follower to right action not the keeping of rules in a works righteousness manner. (RB, John, vol 2, 650)
Jesus tries to explain to his followers, rightly concerned that he will leave him, that he is giving them this teaching while he is with them so they understand. And, that they need not fear because the Holy Spirit, the comforter, the Spirit of Truth, will soon be sent to be with them and to guide them. The Spirit of Truth will teach them everything they need. Somewhat like Psalm 25.5 which reminds the one in prayer that God will, “guide you along the way of all truth.” (RB, John, vol 2, 650)
Jesus then again tells them he is going away but leaving his Peace with them. He will be back, but this is less important that loving Jesus and being apart of the divine community. For in living and loving in the divine community not only keeps one close to Jesus but helps the disciple to see Jesus and the Father revealed. This essential love of one another within the community brings with it a peace and a witness of the Spirit of Truth into the world. I am convinced that Jesus understood that if his followers would live in the Holy Spirit and live in a loving community with one another he (Jesus) would be revealed in glory to the world and that the world would in turn have a revelation of God.
Peace in Jesus’ teachings stems from the grounding and sharing of love born from the Spirit of Truth, like the Holy Spirit itself it is a gift.
The first four lines of this verse are a majestic promise made by Jesus to the disciples he leaves in the world. The peace of which Jesus speaks has nothing to do with the absence of warfare (indeed it will come only after the world has been conquered: 16:33), nor with an end of psychological tension, nor with a sentimental feeling of well-being. Cyril of Alexandria identified pace with the Holy Spirit mentioned in the previous verse; his exegesis is wrong, but it is closer to the truth than many of the modern oratorical distortions of this verse, for it recognizes correctly that the peace of Jesus is a gift that pertains to man’s salvation…peace is one of the blessings of the souls of the just who are in the hand of God…in Johannine realized eschatology peace is enjoyed by Christians even during this life. (RB, John, vol 2, 653)
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…”