Saturday 6 May 2023 – Believe me

1st Reading: Acts 13:44-52

On the following Sabbath almost the whole city gathered to hear the word of the Lord. When the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy and with violent abuse contradicted what Paul said.  Both Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly and said, “It was necessary that the word of God be spoken to you first, but since you reject it and condemn yourselves as unworthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles. For so the Lord has commanded us, “I have made you a light to the Gentiles, that you may be an instrument of salvation to the ends of the earth.”  The Gentiles were delighted when they heard this and glorified the word of the Lord. All who were destined for eternal life came to believe, and the word of the Lord continued to spread through the whole region. The Jews, however, incited the women of prominence who were worshipers and the leading men of the city, stirred up a persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them from their territory. So they shook the dust from their feet in protest against them and went to Iconium. The disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.

Gospel: Jn 14:7-14

Jesus said to his disciples:  “If you know me, then you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”  Philip said to Jesus, “Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?  Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works.  Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works themselves. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these, because I am going to the Father. And whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it.”

Believe me: The only condition to be in the Father’s house is to believe in Jesus Christ. But faith in the Son is not merely a theoretical aspect, it involves doing what Jesus does. Destiny to eternal life is based on faith in Jesus (cf. Act 13:48). Faith is always man’s reaction to God’s primary action. The fact that “to believe” is “to obey,” is particularly emphasized in Heb (11:1ff). Therefore, when Christ says believe in me, he is also seeking our obedience and trust. The Easter event invites us to an action because faith is man’s reaction to God’s action, and this action that must arouse in us is obedience and trust in Christ because he has proven beyond doubt that he is victorious in everything. The special consequence is that in faith special emphasis is laid on turning from the earthly world and turning to the heavenly world (cf. Heb 11: 7).

Prayer: Lord, increase our faith (cf. Lk 17:5)