Posted under Reflections on March 23rd, 2010 by
Jesus then said to those Jews who believed in him, “If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will become free’?” Jesus answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin. A slave does not remain in a household forever, but a son always remains. So if a son frees you, then you will truly be free… Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and am here; I did not come on my own, but he sent me. (Jn 8, 31-42)
In today’s reading, Jesus is playing on  the above words.

To be a disciple one has to remain in Jesus’ words. In fact these words are addressed to the people who believed in Jesus. Believers, but do not remain in his words. Belief in a person necessarily means that one accepts his words and follows them. In John’s gospel the disciples are the followers of the word. Word is identified with the person.  Remember well: “In the beginning was the WORD and the WORD was with God and the WORD was God”  
Freedom is not gained through heredity. Freedom is a gift that an individual receives from God. Sure, Jesus is talking about spiritual freedom.  For Jesus freedom implies being away from sin. Sin enslaves. In John’s gospel, sin is not accepting Jesus as the son of God. That is, not believing that he is from above. Only Jesus will give freedom.
Abraham is a disciple and he is free. In human understanding they might be the descendants of Abraham. But in reality or in God’s way of looking at things they are not the descendants of Abraham. For, Abraham was different from them. (“But you are trying to kill me, because my word has no room among you.”)  
Those who accept God and believe in God as their Father will in turn love Jesus. Because Jesus was sent by the father and he speaks what he has heard from the Father.
So listening to Jesus (THE WORD) and believing in him (FREE from sin) are the true sons and daughters of ABRAHAM and they love Jesus because he is from the FATHER.


Posted under Reflections on March 22nd, 2010 by

…He said to them, "You belong to what is below, I belong to what is above. You belong to this world, but I do not belong to this world. That is why I told you that you will die in your sins. For if you do not believe that I AM, you will die in your sins."… So Jesus said (to them), "When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will realize that I AM, and that I do nothing on my own, but I say only what the Father taught me. The one who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, because I always do what is pleasing to him." (Jn 8,21-30)


When Jesus said a sentence like this “you will die in your sin”, most of us understand that it refers only to an inward, spiritual condition, a spiritual death that takes place inside the heart and soul, and the spiritual death that takes place, at or after, physical death. This is for those who have resolutely turned against God.

And the condition for such a death is, as Jesus has said, ‘you belong to this world… you belong to what is below’.  He contrasts this with, where he belongs to: ‘I belong to what is above’.

This belonging is seen in their belief in Jesus. If they do not believe that he is from above and that he belongs to what is above and that he has come from the Father, then they will die in their sin.

So, sin is, in not believing in Jesus and from where he comes. Also, the spiritual death is, in not accepting that Jesus is from the Father.  

People will understand all these (that Jesus belong to what is above and he has come from the Father and he does the will of the Father) only when he is lifted up (on the cross) from the earth.

Only CROSS will teach who Jesus is.


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