The Way

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Do not let your hearts be troubled.
You have faith in God; have faith also in me.
In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places.
If there were not,
would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?
And if I go and prepare a place for you,
I will come back again and take you to myself,
so that where I am you also may be.
Where I am going you know the way.”
Thomas said to him,
“Master, we do not know where you are going;
how can we know the way?”
Jesus said to him, “I am the way and the truth and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through me.”
(John 14:1-6)

Scripture Study

14:1 Let not your hearts: Jesus wants to protect his disciples from despair at his death and from discouragement when persecution comes their way (14:27; 16:33). Only the peace of God that surpasses understanding can calm their anxieties (Phil 4:6–7).

14:2 my Father’s house: A similar expression is used in 2:16 for the Jerusalem Temple, hinting that the Father’s house is a heavenly sanctuary (Rev 21:22) perched high above in the heavenly Jerusalem (Gal 4:26; Rev 21:1). This is the eternal dwelling where the glorified angels and saints worship the Lord in the eternal liturgy (Heb 12:22–24; Rev 4–5) (CCC 2795). many rooms: Similar to the Herodian Temple in Jerusalem, which had several courts for worship, chambers for storage, and living quarters for priests.

14:6 I am the way: A claim to be the sole Savior of the world (Acts 4:12). He is the one mediator chosen by the Father to bring the human family to glory. Earlier Jesus made this claim when he compared himself to Jacob’s ladder (1:51) (CCC 661, 2466).

14:9 has seen the Father: Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God (Col 1:15), his human flesh (1:14) being an icon of divine spirit (4:24). Through faith we see how Christ’s entire life shows us the heart of the Father and his love for the world (3:16; 5:19–23; CCC 516).

14:13 Whatever you ask: The Ascension of Jesus will not be his retirement, since even now he lives to make priestly intercession for the Church on earth (Heb 7:25; 9:24). I will do it: A promise to grant whatever is needed to facilitate our salvation (Mt 7:7–11). To pray in the name of Jesus is to pray that the Father will bless us through him (Jn 16:23–24; CCC 2614, 2615).

Scripture Reflection

Friends, in today’s familiar and majestic passage, Jesus exhorts us to trust him: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me.” So much depends on the spiritual meaning of the little word “trust.” Jeremiah the prophet laid it out as starkly and simply as possible: “Cursed be the one who trusts in human beings, who seeks his strength in flesh, whose heart turns away from the Lord.” And conversely, “Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose hope is in the Lord.”

What does it mean to trust, to have hope, to turn one’s heart to God? It means to root the whole of one’s life in God, and not to ground our concerns in the things of this world, in wealth, power, pleasure, and honor.

Ask yourself, what is the center of gravity in my life? The Bible consistently proposes this question. For example, read the book of Joshua, when Joshua lays it on the line for the people of Israel: “Do you serve the Lord or some other gods?” That’s the question being asked of you today.

– Bishop Robert Barron

May the virtues of faith, hope, and love go with you today – DV.