Daily Gospel Reflection – Saturday of the Seventh Week of Easter
Bishop Robert Barron
Saturday of the Seventh Week of Easter
Gospel: Jn 21:20-25
Peter turned and saw the disciple following whom Jesus loved, the one who had also reclined upon his chest during the supper and had said, “Master, who is the one who will betray you?” When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, “Lord, what about him?” Jesus said to him, “What if I want him to remain until I come? What concern is it of yours? You follow me.”
So the word spread among the brothers that that disciple would not die. But Jesus had not told him that he would not die, just “What if I want him to remain until I come? What concern is it of yours?”
It is this disciple who testifies to these things and has written them, and we know that his testimony is true. There are also many other things that Jesus did, but if these were to be described individually, I do not think the whole world would contain the books that would be written.
*United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Bishop Robert Barron
Friends, in today’s Gospel, when Peter asks about the destiny of the beloved disciple, Jesus says: "What if I want him to remain until I come? What concern is it of yours? You follow me." Here at the close of John’s Gospel we can take this command to heart. What does following Jesus involve?
True conversion—the metanoia that Jesus talks about—is so much more than moral reform, though it includes that. It has to do with a complete shift in consciousness, a whole new way of looking at one’s life. Jesus offered a teaching that must have been gut-wrenching to his first-century audience: "If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me."
His listeners knew what the cross meant: a death in utter agony, nakedness, and humiliation. They didn’t think of the cross automatically in religious terms, as we do. They knew it in all of its awful power. Unless you crucify your ego, you cannot be my follower, Jesus says. This move—this terrible move—has to be the foundation of the spiritual life.