John 14:15-21 – In love with God

Updated: Feb 4, 2021

This is the Gospel reading for the Sixth Sunday of Easter. It will next be read aloud in many Christian churches on Sunday, May 17, 2020. John’s fourteenth chapter is split between two Sundays in Easter. Verses 1-14 were read last week, on the Fifth Sunday of Easter. Back on the Second Sunday the Gospel reading was from John 20, then the Fourth Sunday it was from John 10. Next Sunday it will be from John 17 and Pentecost (the final Sunday of the Easter season) there are two option from John: chapter 7 or chapter 20 again. The focus on John is not just a Year A choice, as his Gospel is central to all three years of the lectionary cycle. John is a central to the theme of Easter season, because John wrote of the Jesus that was more personal than teacher and miracle worker. The Easter theme, beyond the Easter day miracle of the resurrection (believe it or not), is to comfort you and ease your fears. Last Sunday Jesus began by saying to his disciples, “Do not let your hearts be troubled.” Previously he said, “Peace be with you” and then he said, “I am the gate” … “Whoever enters by me will be saved.” That shows the care and concern Jesus had for his followers and because Christians are the followers of Jesus at all times, the Easter season is when words of comfort and ease are spoken to us so the world gains newly reborn Jesuses. The Easter season is all about our development, from followers to leaders, where leaders of Christianity are expected [by God] to be Apostles and Saints. The day of Pentecost is not about remembering how Peter stood with the eleven and began preaching the Word, but about our achieving the same goal. We have to overcome natural fears; so we need words of encouragement to help us “Receive the Spirit.” Today we read more of John’s fourteenth chapter. Half the chapter is read over two Sundays. None of the other readings from John incorporate that many verses [21]. However, chapter fourteen was Jesus speaking words of promise to his disciples, at a time when they were all unwinding after the Seder meal, drinking the ritual Seder after-dinner wine. Because we are all just like the disciples of Jesus, we need to place ourselves [figuratively] on the reclining pillows of the upper room. The alcohol of fermented grapes needs to be seen as having lifted our natural inhibitions, so our brain’s control over not letting anyone get too close loosens.  There is no need to fear that someone might trick us into spilling our most kept secrets. Judas, the betrayer, has already left, so his lips won’t slip and have him start telling what his plan with the Sanhedrin is. Everyone left in this imaginary room is laid back and relaxed, just like freshly tilled soil, open to receive seeds of thought, which Jesus is going to plant.

This was discussed in the lyrics of Psalm 66 and in the 1 Peter reading. The Acts reading, where Paul pointed out the Greeks had an altar dedicated to “the unknown god” becomes the reason Jesus used the word “If.” If one does not marry God, then God is “unknown” in the Biblical sense’ of “knowing.” The cloud that keeps this from being seen as Jesus talking about his disciples marrying God, with the love of submission to a higher power – a Husband God – is the translation that follows, which appears to be Jesus saying, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever.” Certainly, this is a valid translation, but it is a translation that is blind to the context. Verse sixteen, in Greek, says: “Kagō erōtēsō ton Patera  , kai  allon Paraklēton dōsei hymin  ,  hina ē   « meth’ hymōn eis ton aiōna »  .

In this form that I have presented, notice how the statement made by Jesus (as written by John) is divided by two comma marks plus a symbol called a “left-right arrow,” which is a basic logic symbol.[1]  Following that symbol, the remaining words are placed in quotation mark symbols. Three words are capitalized, which makes them have greater value than the same word written in the lower-case. There is also usage of the word “kai,” which I believe is a statement of importance to follow. Based on these words written, a literal translation makes them state the following:

I also question the Father  , and  a different Paraclete (legal Advisor) he will give you  , that should be me    “  in company with you to the ages  ”  . From seeing what John wrote in this new light, Jesus said he also needed assistance knowing how to live up to the Commandments, so he was a human being like the disciples that had to question the Father for guidance. Prayer is how Jesus made these connections, and David also sang about this in Psalm 66. The use of kai then marks the following is important to grasp: God the Father was the ‘legal Advisor’ for Jesus,  but  a different Paraclete[2] will be given by God to the followers of Jesus. Jesus then named himself (“ē” is the second-person singular aorist middle subjunctive of “eimi” – “I am, I exist”), with the inference being the disciples would be like his relationship with the Father, while like their relationship with him. Therefore, Jesus would be their “legal Advisor,” just as God was his. Jesus becomes the ‘middleman’ in the future equation. The use of the left-right symbol, along with the subjunctive use of “ē” is then a direct explanation of the “If” condition stated prior. This will be the case “If” A and B are true, and the disciples love God as Jesus loves God. When the quotation marks set off the words “in company with you to the ages,” this has a two-fold meaning. First, the souls of the disciples will be saved through their love of God in marriage. The reward is an eternity married to God. Second, the same condition applies to all future disciples (followers) of Jesus, with the same reward of eternal life. With that understood, Jesus then said, “This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him.” Here, John capitalized the Greek word “Pneuma,” which translates as “Spirit,” but the capitalization is clearly identified by Christian scholars as meaning the “Holy Spirit.” When one reads the definition of “Paraclete,” one sees that this has a Christian understanding as “the Holy Spirit.” Because Jesus so frequently began statements with “Truly I say,” he was identifying his words not about to come from his brain, but from his heart, through his “Spirit of truth” that guided all of his actions.

Jesus told the rabbi, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” This is what Jesus told his disciples when he said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” The same words are said to all followers of Jesus, until the end of the ages. Christians have to stop thinking they love God, when they barely speak a nice word to others they despise, even when they know the ones they hate are also professed Christians. To love God does not mean on your terms. Human beings are the submissive wives in this Covenant, with males just as wifely as females. The only way one can love God with ALL ONE’S HEART is to stop selfishly holding onto it, to do with as you please. When Jesus said, “The world cannot receive the Spirit of truth because it neither see it nor knows it” means human brides-to-be cannot tell if another human being is filled with the Holy Spirit and already God’s wife. Those who run about bragging about loving God and being filled with the Holy Spirit should probably be checked for fleeces that hide their evil wolf-like hearts underneath. Being married to God means the love of God is like Zen meditation. Say, “I do,” then shut up and let God do all the rest with His Son. Anything more only keeps one from experiencing nirvana. Amen


[1] It means “material equivalence, such that A ⇔ B is true if both A and B are false, or both A and B are true.

[2] The word parakletos is a verbal adjective, often used of one called to help in a lawcourt. In the Jewish tradition the word was transcribed with Hebrew letters and used for angels, prophets, and the just as advocates before God’s court. The word also acquired the meaning of ‘one who consoles’ (cf. Job 16:2, Theodotion’s and Aquila’s translations; the LXX has the correct word parakletores). It is probably wrong to explain the Johannine parakletos on the basis of only one religious background. The word is filled with a complex meaning: the Spirit replaces Jesus, is an advocate and a witness, but also consoles the disciples. [Wikipedia]

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