Saturday 30 May 2015

Bible Book:

“This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you.” (v. 17)

John 14:8-17 Saturday 30 May 2015

Psalm: Psalm 133


This is an astonishing passage, in which Jesus is promising hisdisciples that they will come to be filled with the Holy Spirit andbecause of that they will be able to do everything he himself hasdone, and more. John sets this dialogue in the context of thePassover meal that Jesus is sharing with his disciples. On the faceof it, this is a promise that is made when things are at theirbleakest. Jesus has just predicted that one of them will betrayhim, and Judas has slipped out from the supper table to do justthat (John 13:21-30). As John's Gospel puts it: "Andit was night" (John 13:30). At a supper table where all aresharing the food and receiving the bread, it has been possible forone of them to receive evil into his heart instead of ablessing.

God cannot force us to receive the good things that are offeredto us. Depending on how we are inclined to receive what is beforeus, we can take into ourselves the power either for good or evil.The Gospel of John often talks about 'the world' as an entitywhich, in itself, cannot understand or accept the word or presenceof God, even though of course it has been created by God. ThePrologue of John's Gospel (John1:1-14) speaks about Jesus as the Word of God who took flesh,but was not recognised: "He was in the world, and the world cameinto being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came towhat was his own, and his own people did not accept him." (John1:10-11) And so this writer deals with the mystery of how Jesuscould fail to be acknowledged by all.

We do not have the power, through our own efforts orunderstanding, to know what is truly going on in our world. Unlesswe are filled with the Spirit, our eyesremain veiled and our earsblocked. But when God's Spirit is within us, we will understand,and we will be able to receive what God has in store for us.

To Ponder

  • Think about some of your strongly held political views. Who orwhat has given rise to these convictions in you?
  • As you encounter the news each day, pray for the Spirit of Godto help you interpret the world.
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