3/30/2023 (Thursday) Today’s gospel reading: John 8:51-59
51 Jesus said to the Jews: “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever keeps my word will never see death.”
52 So the Jews said to him, “Now we are sure that you are possessed. Abraham died, as did the prophets, yet you say, ‘Whoever keeps my word will never taste death.’
53 Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died? Or the prophets, who died? Who do you make yourself out to be?”
54 Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is worth nothing; but it is my Father who glorifies me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God.’
55 You do not know him, but I know him. And if I should say that I do not know him, I would be like you a liar. But I do know him and I keep his word.
56 Abraham your father rejoiced to see my day; he saw it and was glad.”
57 So the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old and you have seen Abraham?”
58 Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, before Abraham came to be, I AM.”
59 So they picked up stones to throw at him; but Jesus hid and went out of the temple area.
3/30/2023 (Thursday) Today’s gospel reflection: John 8:51-59
In verse 51 of the gospel reading above, we hear Jesus give the assurance that those who keep His word will not see death. Of course, the Jews did not understand. They were only thinking of physical death, just like many people do nowadays. Their hardness of hearts and their traditions prevented them from accepting the truth of what Jesus was saying. They don’t even argue with reason. So, they just dismissed Jesus as a lunatic and even tried to stone Him. How pitiful it is that many people resort to violence for some things they don’t understand.
“Amen, Amen I say to you…”. Jesus is emphasizing the truth of eternal life which can only be obtained if we keep His word. Previously, He told the Pharisees that they will die in sin. That is because they continued to reject Jesus. How can they go to a place if they are rejecting the one preparing it? On the other hand, if we accept and obey His word, we will reject sin and instead, endeavor to glorify God in all the things that we think, say and do. This is the path to eternal life which means no death.
Let us take note that in many of His discourse with the Jews, Jesus often mention about glorifying God. In the gospel above, He mentions the Father glorifying Him. It did happen on Resurrection day. By being obedient to His Father up to the last drop of His blood, He took the glory He deserved, the glory that was His from the very beginning. So when He says, “follow me”, He is also telling us to be obedient by keeping His word. Then we will not see death because we will live in eternity in the mansion He has prepared for us (John 14:2-6).
Indeed, there is hope for anyone who follows Jesus. Let us pray that more and more people will accept Him as Lord and savior.
Go here to read further gospel reflection.