The Holy Gospel: May 1, 2011 (Year A)

Read:  John 20:19-31

Meditation:  “Everything for Him”

At the end of today’s lesson, John says that he wrote everything in his gospel, so we might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing we might have life in his name (20:31).  As Henri Nouwen once said, “Jesus is the Gospel.”  That’s John’s perspective too.

Everything for him—everything oriented in relation to him—everything emerging from and empowered by him.  It’s what the early church declared: “Jesus is Lord.”  On the first Sunday after the announcement of Christ’s resurrection—that Jesus is alive, and alive forever, the Christian church invites us to commit ourselves to Jesus and say with John “everything for him.”

Like Thomas, we may begin moving in that direction through struggle.  But it is a great mistake to label him as “doubting Thomas.”  He ended up making an affirmation of faith as great as anyone in the Bible:  “my Lord, and my God!” (20:28).  In the moment that he touched the wounds of Christ, everything that he had known about Jesus came together for his transformation.

John hoped everything he wrote would come together for the transformation of anyone who read his gospel.  In turn, we are God’s “living letters”—women and men who can ask for nothing finer than this:  that everything in our lives might glorify Jesus.

About Steve Harper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 42 books. Also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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