JOHN 6:29

Jakarta, 4 June 2018

A Christian Pilgrim


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JOHN 1:29

Jakarta, 13 May 2018

A Christian Pilgrim


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JOHN 14:18

Jakarta, 11 May 2018

A Christian Pilgrim


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 (A biblical refection on THE SIXTH SUNDAY OF EASTER [YEAR B] – May 6, 2018)

Gospel Reading: John 15:9-17 

First Reading: Acts 10:25-26,34-35,44-48; Psalms: Psalm 98:1-4; Second Reading: 1John 4:7-10 

The Scripture Text

“As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.”

“This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.  You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide; so that whatever you ask the Father in My name, He may give it to you. This I command you, to love one another.”  (John 15:9-17 RSV) 

The Bible often pictures God as a groom who jealously loves and cares for His bride (His chosen people), and time after time it compares God’s love for us to the love between a husband and wife. This intense love relationship is what makes the Christian God different from the gods of most other religions. Some religions teach about a God who, because He is other-worldly and distant, is not concerned about our everyday lives; other religions teach about a powerful God or a vengeful and punishing God. Along with Judaism and Islam, Christianity is one of the few religions that teaches about a God of love who is not only interested in us but who also wants to share His life with us.

Two people who love each other try to make each other happy. A husband shows love for his wife by doing the things that please her and by avoiding the things that make her angry. The wife, likewise, shows her love for her husband in the same manner. However, they first have to communicate what it is that pleases them. They need to make their likes and dislikes known to each other, telling each other how to love. This same process takes place in our relationship with God.

In today’s reading, Jesus tells us we can show our love for Him by keeping His commandments. This means we shouldn’t think of the commandments just as a list of do’s and don’ts but rather compare them to the husband who buys his wife flowers on her birthday or the wife who surprises her husband by baking his favorite pie. Just as these are ways a married couple says “I love you” to each other, following the commandments are ways we can say “I love you” to God.

As in other relationships, our relationship with God is a two way street. We not only show our love for God but God also shows His love for us. Jesus showed the depth of His love by dying on the cross for us, a love so great He was even willing to suffer pain and endures humiliation on our behalf. As Jesus says in today’s Gospel, the greatest love possible if for a person to give his life for his friends. We are Jesus’ friends if we do what He commands us.

Source: Jerome J. Sabatowich, Cycling Through the Gospels – Gospel Commentaries for Cycles A, B, and C, pages 156-157.) 

Short Prayer: Heavenly Father, ever-living God, help us to celebrate our joy in the resurrection of the Lord and to express in our lives the love we celebrate. We pray this, in the most precious name of Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord and Savior, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Jakarta, 4 May 2018 

A Christian Pilgrim


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Today’s Gospel Reading: John 10:22-30 – FOURTH WEEK OF EASTER: Tuesday, 24 April 2018 

The Lord declares Himself and the Father to be One. As time went on, this statement of the Lord would be clarified. Are Jesus and the Father one thing? Are they two phases of one thing? Do they think alike? Will alike? Love alike? Thus are doctrines born.

We go through the same process. Our faith is clarified and matured through experience. We all have good times and bad. The point is not to insulate our faith from them. It is important that our believing grow together with our experiencing. Then, not only will events that occur in our life help us explore the implications of our faith but our faith will help us experience them in the light of the Lord.

Like the early Church, our believing should grow with our experiencing.

Jakarta, 24 April 2018

A Christian Pilgrim

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Posted by on April 24, 2018 in TODAY'S THOUGHT 2018


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Today’s Gospel Reading: John 3:16-21 – SECOND WEEK OF EASTER: Wednesday, 11 April 2018

This Gospel reading contains the famous verse that some call “the Bible within the Bible”: “For God loved the world so much that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him may not die but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

This verse sums up the entire biblical message. It also affirms the two major biblical truths. First, God took the initiative to save us. Sometimes preachers give the impression that God is more interested in condemning than in saving. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Second, the affirms that God’s initiative was motivated by love. God could not bear seeing His children wander farther and farther from home.

Now, let us ask ourselves: “Are we totally convinced of God’s fatherly love for us?” A quote from the teaching of Saint Augustine of Hippo: “God loves each one of us as if there was just one of us to love.”

Jakarta, 11 April 2018

A Christian Pilgrim


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Today’s Gospel Reading: John 21:1-14 – EASTER FRIDAY: 6 April 2018

One effect of the Resurrection was the eventual split of the Christian Church away from Judaism. Judaism was conservative because it was built around the Torah Law. That Torah Law could be applied, interpreted and adapted but the psychological posture was that of preserving and keeping the Law. By contrast, Christianity thrust outward from the start. Unlike Judaism, it was intensely missionary. The disciples were sent to all nations (the probable reference of the 153 fish).

The early Church had no hesitation in creating new offices, new rules, rearranging the Jewish liturgy to suit it own purposes and to speak in God’s name. The reason for such energy and creativity was that at its center was not the Torah Law but the Holy Spirit of the Risen Lord Himself.  The Christian Church has a dynamic center. At the center of our spiritual life is not an empty tomb or Torah Law but the Risen Lord Himself. His Spirit is present in our hearts urging us toward deeper faith and wider love.

The spiritual vigor at the center of the Church derives not from a thing, but from a Person — the Risen Lord.

Jakarta, 6 April 2018

A Christian Pilgrim 


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