Liturgic day: Tuesday 4th of Easter
Gospel text (Jn 10,22-30): The time came for the feast of the Dedication. It was winter and Jesus walked back and forth in the portico of Solomon. The Jews then gathered around him and said to him, «How long will you keep us in doubt? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly». Jesus answered, «I have already told you but you do not believe. The works I do in my Father’s name proclaim who I am, but you don’t believe because, as I said, you are not my sheep. My sheep hear my voice and I know them; they follow me and I give them eternal life. They shall never perish and no one will ever steal them from me. What the Father has given me is stronger than everything and no one can snatch it from the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one».
Comment: Fr. Miquel MASATS i Roca (Girona, Spain)
I and the Father are one
Today, we see Jesus walking «back and forth in the portico of Solomon» (Jn 10:23), during the Feast of Dedication, in Jerusalem. It was then when the Jews ask him: «If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly», and Jesus answers: «I have already told you but you do not believe» (Jn 10:24-25).
Only through Faith man is able to recognize Jesus Christ as the Son of God. When The Holy Father John Paul II addressed the young people on occasion of the 15th World Youth Day at Tor Vergata, in the year 2000, he spoke about the “school of faith”. To the question «Who do the crowds say that I am?» (Lk 9:18), there are many answers… But, then, Jesus becomes more personal: «But, who do you say that I am?». To correctly answer this question we need the “revelation of the Father”. To be able to answer like Simon Peter did —«You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God» (Mt 16:16)— it takes God’s grace.
But, even though God wishes everybody to believe and be saved, only humble men are capacitated to receive the gift of grace. «But with the humble is wisdom», can be read in the Book of Proverbs (11:2). Man’s true wisdom consists of trusting God.
Saint Thomas Aquinas comments on this passage of the Gospel by saying: «I can see thanks to the sun light, but if I close my eyes, I cannot see; but this is not the fault of the sun, but mine».
Jesus tells them to believe in him, if nothing else, because of his works that manifest God’s power: «The works I do in my Father’s name proclaim who I am» (Jn 10:25).
Jesus knows his sheep and his sheep hear his voice. Faith allows us to connect with Jesus through prayer. What else is a prayer but a way to communicate with Jesus Christ, who loves us and takes us to the Father? And the outcome and reward of this intimacy with Jesus in this life is eternal life, as we have read in the Gospel.