Read John 14:1-14.

Jesus’ discourse to his disciples on the night of the last supper as related by John is one of the most sublime sections of the Bible. In it Jesus tells his disciples all the remaining things they need to learn. He addresses the deepest matters—the relationship between God and himself and the disciples and the world. He opens his heart in prayer. He hints at the nature of the salvation of the world.

This discourse grows out of the imminent events of the passion. I am leaving you. I am going to a place where you cannot yet follow. I am showing you the Father. I will be betrayed and crucified. You will be scattered and confused and afraid. There will be a global pandemic and millions will die. Nation will turn against nation and people against people. There will be wars and famines and antichrists.

On this point Jesus says, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God. Believe also in me.” You believe that God is the creator of the universe, the sustainer of all things, the redeemer of the world. Believe those same things of me. I and the Father are one. Peace is voluntary. It is within your control. It is a choice. When your heart is troubled, it is because you are not keeping in mind that I am the redeemer of the world. Do not let your hearts be troubled.

The disciples are in a cloud, confused, afraid. “Lord, we do not know where you are going.” They want to know and understand the future. To have certainty and confidence and political victory.

On this point Jesus says, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will know my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” Do not expect to see clearly. Do not seek a path to triumph. Instead, follow and trust. What is truth? I am truth. What is certainty? I am certainty. Which is the right way? I am the way. If I did not have a destination prepared for you at the end of this dark path, I would not lead you this way.

The disciples aren’t getting it. “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.”

On this point Jesus says, “Have I been with you all this time and still you do not know me? Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me. I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” I am in the Father, and when you are in me, you too are in the Father. Together, we save the world. The self-giving body of Christ is the glory of the Father. Though our path leads through darkness and death, there is a resurrection. There is sunrise and a glorious morning.

Sing: How bright appears the morning star

Harry Plantinga

Harry Plantinga is a professor of computer science at Calvin University and the director of and