Sunday 01 May 2016

Bible Book:

“Peace 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.” (v. 27)

John 14:23-29 Sunday 1 May 2016

Psalm: Psalm 67


Today's passage ends the firstsection of what is called Jesus' 'farewell discourse' in John'sGospel. It takes place on the night before his death, after Jesushas washed the feet of his disciples (John13:1-20) and Judas Iscariot has left the table to betray them(John 13:21-30). In this situation of hightension, Jesus is explaining to the disciples how they will be ableto continue without him, and how they should be with oneanother.

In verse 26 Jesus speaks of an'Advocate' or helper sent by the Father in Jesus' own name, theHoly Spirit. Although this verse helped to shape the formaldoctrine of the Trinity, the full idea of the Father, Son, and HolySpirit was not adopted until the ecumenical councils of the fourthcentury, and has continued to develop long after.  

Jesus speaks of a Holy Spiritthat will work by reminding the Church "of all that I have said toyou" (v. 26), provoking the Church in all ages to remember Jesus inlife-giving ways. It will not be a case of the Holy Spiritreplacing Jesus: the Holy Spirit will not be separate from the workof Jesus or offer new teaching. Rather, Jesus promises hisdisciples in this passage that the Holy Spirit will make a directrelationship with him possible for those who have not met him. Thusin the power of the Spirit sent by the Father, Jesus will remainalive to the Church in all ages.

Jesus' next bequest to thedisciples is as concrete as the gift of the Holy Spirit wasmysterious: peace. It is not to be a peace the world wouldrecognise (ie absence of conflict, material security) but a deeppeace that springs from being in communion with him. This is thefirst use of the word "peace" in John's Gospel, and Jesus gives itas a gift to allow the disciples to stand firm in the face ofdifficulty that will come.

To Ponder

  • Jesus promised the disciples gifts of the Spirit, and peace.What final gifts of advice or teaching would you leave with yourfriends or family?
  • To what extent have you received the gift of peace that Jesusspoke of, in difficult or conflicted times? 
Previous Page Saturday 14 May 2016
Next Page Monday 02 May 2016