Close, faraway

As I am up to the gospel of John chapter 15:20-21 (verses 20-21) in my reflections here is my reflection on those verses from the Bible:

These verses predict a rather somber and bleak future for the twelve disciples of Jesus. In using the well known modern expression of something unfortunate befalling someone, the disciples’ future is unfortunate, not a matter of wealth and prosperity, but on closer analysis their lives will not really be a matter of good or bad fortune if this is how we use an expression of luck in the modern world.

In the Bible I find no evidence to support luck in God’s dealing with his people. In this case, it seems more a matter of people’s choosing to act on God’s people. They choose to be offended by the disciple’s leader, Jesus, and in being so, attack his people, his disciples.

In his long monologue, seemingly spoken during his ‘last supper’ with his twelve disciples, Jesus predicts that his disciples will emulate him in being persecuted. Antagonists will pay attention to what the disciples teach and preach, their ‘words’. Their confession and profession of faith in Jesus is put under the microscope. Antagonizing people do this not because of the disciple’s faith itself, but because of the object of their faith, Jesus.

Are those who persecuted Jesus’ disciples completely ignorant of Jesus, his works and his mission and origin? Do they know nothing about him?

In my view, they do not listen. They see Jesus from their own lens, meaning Jesus and his message offends them.

If the antagonists knew whom they were persecuting — they may change and turn to him out of his goodness and life that they get to know. But do they appear selfish, not thinking of the other — Jesus?

In my own selfishness, how do I not think of Jesus? How could I persecute him unknowingly? And how could anybody? Pray that we can serve him closer.

Peace

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. — Jesus to his disciples.

– John 14:27

I do not know for sure what Jesus meant by this verse, but I trust there are scholars who have done their homework on it. As for me, here are my thoughts on this verse which are not definitive or claiming what Jesus actually meant, but I am convinced of a literal interpretation rather than a mythic one.

I do believe that Jesus can give us peace from his Spirit if we may ask him, but I would not like to put a parameter on how this happens to individuals, but it can happen and come from Jesus.

There is a more doctrinal angle one could read into this verse as well, such as Jesus bridging the gap between himself and his disciples thus making them right with him. Jesus is making people who believe in him right with himself and God which is a Christian theme in the New Testament.

Considering the above verse, what kind of peace is Jesus talking about here? To not let anything come between the disciples and Jesus as he has made his peace with them. So, do not allow yourselves to turn away from him unless you lose that relationship.

Could this verse be about inner peace? If Jesus gives them inner peace, why would they have to do something so their hearts would not be troubled? Unless this verse means to not let anything disturb the inner peace Jesus gives. This inner peace could come from his Spirit and dwells within them so do not let anything disturb that.

Finally, both of these interpretations are equally true as when someone believes in Jesus, they have made been at peace with him, and can receive his Spirit of peace in their hearts as evidence of this peace with Jesus. Just do not lose that relationship with him; let nothing overcome it.

Graces

Grace besides the shadows, but

The shadows overcome me,

I could tell they had,

I was there to see

The consummation of her beauty.

Grace, grace, God’s light shines on you

Created by him, the graces you possess

Charm

Joy

Drowned.

In shadows, darkness fell on me

In that moment

The darkness winks

I don’t know what’s happened

Your beauty, your beauty

God’s grace shone on you.

Maimed, I am awaiting you again, as you were.

I may never know

The Light waits, it waits…The Light will come

So I will see you again.