Meditation of the week

The Way, the Truth and the Life

Jn 14,1-12.

This discourse takes place at the Last Supper immediately after Jesus has told his disciples that he is about to suffer and die (13,31-33). He asks them to love one another (13,34-35), and predicts that Peter will betray him (13,38).

Jesus is concerned with what will happen to his disciples after he dies.

He begins by exhorting them not to let their hearts be troubled but to trust/have faith in God and in Jesus himself. He is going to prepare a place for them in the Father’s house and then will return to take them to it so that they can be with him there.  He assumes that they know where he is going and the way to it. We should be grateful for Thomas’s ignorance and honesty and for the magnificent reply it elicits from Jesus.  Jesus by his example is the way to the Father. He reveals the Father (truth), and gives us eternal life.    He is the way because through him we have access to the Father. He is the truth because he is the teacher of the truth about the Father and his love for us.  He is the life –  eternal life is to know God and Jesus Christ whom He has sent (17,3). Some of the ancient saints said that the way leads to the truth and life. Others said the way and the truth lead to life – eternal life in heaven.   Others conclude that Jesus is the way because he is the truth and life.  What do you say?

Philip doesn’t get the message. He wants to see the Father. He wants a theophany, a revelation of God like Moses had at Sinai. Jesus implies that they already have had it.   He asserts that to have seen him is to have seen the Father. He is in the Father and the Father in him. His words are those of the Father and his works are done by the Father living in him.

Whoever believes in Jesus will perform greater works than he does.  The Father will enable them to do, in the Son’s name, works manifesting his glory. They will have power over sin (20,21-22) and  he will give them the Paraclete ,(16,7-11), who will enable them to do these greater works in post- resurrection times. Their works will be greater in extent than Jesus’ works because theirs will spread to all nations and down through the ages.   Each of us will make our contribution to those greater works.

This gospel text, often used at Funeral Masses, affirms clearly the reality and hope of the after-life for believers. The “many mansions” in the Father’s house emphasises that life with God and Jesus awaits all who try to follow the way Jesus maps out for them, who live the truth he offers, and  desire the life which only he can give

There are seven “ I am” statements in John’s gospel which echo God’s answer to Moses’  question as  to what His name was. God answered, “ I am who I am.”  (Exodus 3,14).  In the seven “ I am” statements of Jesus, each statement describes an aspect of his identity and mission. Look up John 6,35; 6,51;  8,12; (9,5);  10,7,9;  10,11,14;  11,25;  14,6;  15,1,5.  Take one for each day  of the week and see what it says to your life.   559 R.

How do you show that that Jesus is the way and the truth of your life?

Father Geoff O’Grady