lunes, 26 de mayo de 2014

"If you love me, you will keep my commandments."

6th Sunday of Easter
May 25, 2014
Jn 14:15-21

The gospel on the Sixth Sunday of Easter is taken from John. This is the continuation of the farewell discourse which belongs to the second major part of the Fourth Gospel called “the Book of Glory.” Through these gospel passages we can see the important role of love in the Christian community as a fundamental principle of Christian living. The virtue of love is the most prominent theme in Gospel of John. The Father loves His Son, Jesus loves the Father, and the Son loves His disciples. But the question is: Do the disciples love Jesus? How? These questions are in order in the light of the words that he uttered: “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” Our readings for this sixth Sunday of Easter present how the disciples lived that love in the mission given to them by our Lord Jesus Christ.

Bringing the Good News to others is the first manifestation of the disciples’ love for Jesus. After the great persecution against the Church of Jerusalem some of the apostles fled to other parts of Judea, and to the regions of Samaria (cf. Acts 8:5ff) and Galilee. There, they proclaimed the Good News and continued the healing ministry of Christ. The people received the Holy Spirit when they were baptized by the disciples in the name of Christ.

The second manifestation of the disciples’ love to Jesus was that they blessed and kept the Lord Jesus Christ in their hearts through upright Christian living. Indeed, the very teaching exhorted by Peter in the second reading (1 pt 3:15-18) was right along the same alley. They would always remember that Christ died for the unjust to save humanity from sinfulness and bring them to God. Their fears dispelled, these disciples found the courage to proclaim Christ and live their identity as followers of Christ by loving even in the face of persecution and trials.

And how? Our gospel has definite answer to this question. Before His Passion, during the last Supper, Jesus left them a good advice, "If you love me, keep my commandments." While he was telling this, he promised to them that he would not leave them orphans. It means that they would not be left alone in their mission. They would experience the loving presence of both the Father and the Son through the Holy Spirit which is a Spirit of Truth and a Helper.

Have we experienced that loving presence of God in our life? Do we feel alone or abandoned when we are facing the trials, sufferings and many other difficulties in life? If we have not yet experienced the loving presence of God then we need to ask ourselves: Do we love him and keep his commandments?

Loving as the basis of greatest commandment of God is so demanding on our part as human beings. It requires a lot to truly love God and neighbor. We are like a camel passing through the eye of the needle, but this is not impossible for us Christians even if we live in the modern age with its accompanying complexity in the way we relate. As Jesus promised to the first disciples, he already sent to us the Holy Spirit to guide us in many circumstances of our daily living as Christians.

The Holy Spirit is always present in all the sacraments that we have been receiving through the church’s ministry. In the celebration of Eucharist, when we listen carefully to the Word of God and proclaim it to others through our life-giving witness, surely the Holy Spirit is there guiding us. We are not alone whether we are in the mission or we are challenged by life's intricacies. Our Risen Lord is true to his promises. He is actively present in our life, in each one of us as a member of the church and as a community of disciples through his Spirit. So, we should always humble ourselves because it is not through our own capacity that we are able to do good deeds. Everything we accomplish is a grace coming from Christ who dwells with God the Father and the Holy Spirit.

- Sem. Mike Dupo


Jesus, our friend and brother, in you we have come to know our real identity that is intricately connected and sustained by the love that emanates from your very nature. May the gift of knowing be deepened in our experience of your love that as we consciously allow your love to nourish us, we may be also be your presence to other people in our little spheres of influence. Amen.

1 comentario:

    Are infants, unborn children, and young children sinners? Of course they are not sinners. To believe that you would have to believe the false doctrine of original sin. There is no Biblical evidence that men are now nor were they ever guilty of Adam's sin. Men die physically because of Adam's sin. Men die spiritually because the the sins they themselves commit.

    Romans 9:11 (for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil......(NKJV)

    The unborn cannot commit evil.

    Deuteronomy 1:34-39 ......39 'Moreover your little ones and your children, who you will be victims, who today have no knowledge of good and evil, they shall go in there; to them I will give it, and they shall possess it. (NKJV)

    The Lord does not punish children for the sins of their fathers nor for the sin of Adam.

    Isaiah 7:14-16 ...Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. 15 "Curds and honey He shall eat, that He may know to refuse the evil and choose the good. 16. "For before the Child shall know to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land that you dread will be forsaken by both her kings.(NKJV)

    Even Jesus had an age of accountability. Jesus had to reach an age where He knew right from wrong before He could be charged with committing sin. Infants, the unborn, and small children have to reach a certain age before they can be guilty of sin. Jesus was not guilty of Adam's sin nor did He Himself commit sin.

    The doctrine of original sin and infant baptism is a man-made tradition.

    Matthew 18: 2-3 ..."Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter into the the kingdom of heaven. (NKJV)

    Certainly Jesus was not saying you have to be guilty of original sin like these children to enter into heaven. Little children are not guilty of Adam's sin nor any other kind of sin.

    Hebrews 2:10-17....17 Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. (NKJV)

    In order to believe the false doctrine of original sin you would have to believe that Jesus was guilty of Adam's sin and therefore a sinner from birth. Jesus had to made like us in every respect.

    Jesus was born like us all. NOT GUILTY OF ADAM'S SIN NOR ANY OTHER SIN.

    Men are only guilty of the sins they themselves commit at the point when they can distinguish good from evil. Yes, there is an age of accountability.

    You can believe the false doctrine of original sin and of children sinners that is written in man-made creed books or you can believe God's word as recorded in the Bible.