Weekly Church Service – Easter 5: 7 May 2023


‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life,’ says the Lord. ‘No one comes to the Father except through me.’ John 14:6



Everliving God, whose Son Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life:
give us grace to love one another, to follow in the way of his commandments, and to share his risen life;
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.



This week:

  • Acts 7:55-60
  • Psalm 31:1-5, 17-18
  • 1 Peter 2:11-25
  • John 14:1-14

  • Next week:
  • Acts 17:22-31
  • Psalm 66:7-19
  • 1 Peter 3:8-22
  • John 14:15-21

A Thought to Ponder

Easter 5 – John 14:1-14
“Whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater than these, because I am going to the Father.”

Today’s Gospel takes place at the Last Supper. John’s account of that night is the longest in the Gospels – five chapters in length (but with no account of the institution of the Eucharist). The evangelist uses a literary device common in Scripture: A leader (Moses, Joshua, David, Tobit) gathers his own (family, friends, disciples) to
announce his imminent departure, offer advice and insight into the future and give final instructions.

At the time of the writing the Fourth Gospel, Christians are being harassed by both the Jews and the Romans. Proclaiming the Crucified Jesus as the Messiah is blasphemy to Judaism, while accusing the Romans of “judicial murder” in the death of Jesus threatens the new faith’s chances of survival as a “lawful religion”
tolerated by their Roman occupiers.

The dominant themes here are consolation and encouragement: Be faithful, remember and live what I have taught you, for better days are ahead for you. Christ – the Way to God, the Truth of God and Life incarnate of God – will return for the faithful “who do the works that I do.”

The Jesus of the Gospel does not only show us the way – his life of humble and generous servanthood is the way; he not just philosophises about a concept of truth – he is the perfect revelation of the truth about a God of enduring and unlimited love for his people; he is not just a preacher of futuristic promises – he has been raised up by God to a state of existence in God to which he invites all of us. In embracing the Spirit of his Gospel and living the hope of his Word, we encounter, in Christ, God himself.

Regardless of the career path we choose – doctor, labourer, bank teller, teacher, parent or priest – if we truly consider ourselves disciples of the Risen Jesus, we are called “to do the work I do.” In our homes, workplaces, city halls and playgrounds, we are called to bring the miracle of Easter life: the reconciliation, justice and peace of the Risen One in whom God has revealed himself to all of humanity.

Seldom do we think of death as a return home, but today’s Gospel image of the “house with many dwelling places” helps us to realise we were created for a life beyond this one – we were created by God for life in and with him.

As Christians, we live in the eternal hope of one day living in God’s dwelling place – but that “place” of hope and compassion and peace exists here and now in the places we create where the poor and sick are cared for, the fallen are lifted up, and lost and rejected are sought after and brought home. © Connections/MediaWorks


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