WEDNESDAY OF EASTER WEEK 2
MASS OF REQUIEM 0930 (Pro Anima Lorna Wright)
MASS OF OUR LADY 1900 (Walsingham Cell)
No one who believes in him will be judged; but whoever does not believe is judged already, because that person does not believe in the Name of God’s only Son. And the judgement is this: though the light has come into the world people have preferred darkness to the light because their deeds were evil. And indeed, everybody who does wrong hates the light and avoids it, to prevent his actions from being shown up; but whoever does the truth comes out into the light, so that what he is doing may plainly appear as done in God.’
• John 3, 16: God loved the world. The word world is one of those words used more frequently in the Gospel of John: 78 times! It has several meanings. In the first place world may signify the earth, the space inhabited by human beings (Jn 11, 9; 21, 25) or also the created universe (Jn 17, 5.24) World can also mean the persons who inhabit this earth, all of humanity (Jn 1, 9; 3, 16; 4, 42; 6, 14; 8, 12). It can also mean a large group, a numerous group of persons, as when we speak of “the whole world” (Jn 12, 19; 14, 27). Here, in our text the word world also has the sense of humanity, all the human beings. God so loves humanity that he gave his only Son. The one who accepts that God reaches down to us in Jesus, has already passed through death and has eternal life.
• John 3, 17-19: The true sense of judgment. The image of God which appears in the three verses is that of a Father full of tenderness and not of a severe judgment. God sends his Son not to judge and condemn the world, but in order that the world may be saved through him. The one who believes in Jesus and accepts him as the revelation of God is not judged, because he is already accepted by God. And the one who does not believe in Jesus has already been judged. He excludes himself. And the Evangelist repeats what he had already said in the Prologue: many persons do not want to accept Jesus, because his light reveals the evil which exists in them (cf. Jn 1, 5.10-11).
• John 3, 20-21: To practice truth: In every human being, there is a divine seed, a trait of the Creator. Jesus, the revelation of the Father, is a response to this deepest desire of the human being. The one, who wants to be faithful to what he has deepest in him, accepts Jesus. It is difficult to find a broader ecumenical vision than the one expressed in these three verses in the Gospel of John.
• To complete the significance of the word world in the Fourth Gospel. Other times the word world means that part of humanity opposed to Jesus and to his message. There the word world assumes the meaning of “enemies” or “opponents” (Jn 7, 4.7; 8, 23.26; 9, 39; 12, 25). This world which is contrary to the practice of the liberty of Jesus, is directed by the enemy or Satan, also called the “prince of this world” (Jn 14, 30; 16, 11). It represents the Roman Empire and, at the same time, also those responsible of the Jews who driving out the followers of Jesus from the Synagogue. This world persecutes and kills the communities causing tribulations to the faithful (Jn 16, 33). Jesus will liberate them, conquering the prince of this world (Jn 12, 31). Therefore, world means a situation of injustice, of oppression, which generates hatred and persecution against the communities of the Beloved Disciple. The persecutors are those persons who have the power, the leaders, both of the Empire and of the Synagogue. Lastly, all those who practice injustice using for this the name of God (Jn 16, 2). The hope which the Gospel gives to the persecuted communities is that Jesus is stronger than the world. This is why he says: “In the world you will have hardship, but be courageous, I have conquered the world!” (Jn 16, 33).
• The more ecumenical truth that exists is the life which God has given us and for which he has given his only Son. How do I live Ecumenism in my daily life?
his praise continually on my lips.
I will praise Yahweh from my heart;
let the humble hear and rejoice. (Ps 34,1-2)