Introduction: St John in his Gospel uses significant verbs to make the text more dynamic and real, encouraging the reader to enter into the text imagining it as if it were sequences scenes from a film. The chronological account of events is also an important element in John’s gospel to emphasise the historical identity of Jesus as the incarnate God who came to live among us as a man. Therefore, by recording times and events helps us to kind of freeze the different scenes and capture them in our minds just as the camera does to a scene in one shot.
Thank you for the gift of your Son Jesus
Whom you sent to the world
to make you known to all peoples
and by knowing you
we all may have life in you.
- Read the Gospel of John 1:35-39; read the text slowly and listen attentively with the ‘ear of your heart’. What word, sentence or phrase stands out for you?
- Reflect: read the text again and pay attention of what touches you; why is it meaningful for you. What thought or reflection comes to you.
- Respond: read the text again but this time respond spontaneously to the word of God. In other words, make a dialogue with God what comes from within you. What gift does this text lead me to ask for from the Lord ?
- Stay with the Word: read the text a final time and rest in the word. Allow God to speak to you in deep silence. Don’t say anything just listen to God’s words. What is He saying?
- Take now the word, sentence or phase, into your daily life/activity; allow it to become part of you. Always listen to it, reflect on it, pray over it and rest on it as time allows during the day. Then allow the Word lead you action.
Concluding your ‘Lectio Divina’ with the ‘Our Father’…
Introduction: After John the Baptist singled out Jesus as the “Lamb of God” (Jn 1:29), he ratifies to his follower that: “this is the one I spoke of…” as if he was insinuating he is the one they should follow.
Central Message: John the Baptist was standing there…with two of his disciples, Jesus passed, and John stared hard at him and said, ‘Look, there is the lamb of God’…the two disciples followed Jesus…Jesus saw them following him and said, ‘What do you want? They answer Rabbi, where do you live? ‘Come and see’ he replied; they went and saw where he lived and stayed with him the rest of the day…
a) The text begins with the words “on the following day” it indicates the new beginning a totally new journey that cannot be repeated. It is as if something new is going to happen. John sees Jesus’ time as compare to the Creation narratives which are described in the course of a week. In John’s chapter one narratives, it seemed they are made in the course of a week too to indicate two things, the first, that Jesus has enter into our time, into our history (incarnation), and second he is identical to the Father the Creator, who makes all things new, recreating our fallen human race.
b) The verbs Look and See are of vital importance especially in Jesus because like the Father by saying a word he creates, things come into existence, he creates all things out of his infinite love, creative love. Jesus by looking at people he recreates them from within, he changes them, he bring them to their original image, an image disfigured by sin and sickness. So when he looks he loves deeply, love changes everything within us but only when that love is accepted and welcome unconditionally (cfr. Mt 10:21)
c) “The two disciples left John the Baptist and followed Jesus”. Like two good disciples, Andrew and John, obeyed John who practically say to them it is he whom you should follow ‘he is the Lamb of God’. In the Jews language lamb means the Servant of God spoken by the prophets. So they believed and started following Jesus. Perhaps, Andrew and John gradually became aware of that rupture experienced in their spiritual life from following a man of God to following the ‘Son of God’, the Messiah. There was that kind of spiritual fascination towards Jesus, a kind of magnetic attraction to him to discover who he was. Obviously it was Jesus that by looking deeply at them who planted in their hearts a longing desire for him and for God’s knowledge “What do you want?” They wanted to know more about him and for that reason they answered by another question “Where do you live?”
d) “Come and see” is the invitation of Jesus to Andrew and John to become his disciples, an invitation to an inner disposition to receive a new knowledge that only the Holy Spirit could reveal through Jesus. They remained with him that day, it was four o’clock in the afternoon, until the following day. So we could imaging the things they talked about all those hours, the questions they asked etc.… and because they have the disposition to listen to and to live with him Jesus revealed himself to them who he was, the Messiah the Son of God. The disciples were filled with joy and enthusiasm that they could not contained to keep for themselves what they have experienced. So they started to share with others that experience that marked them for the rest of their lives.
Some questions for our reflexion:
- What do you want, what is your deepest desire?
- Are you disposed to submit yourself to Jesus?
- Are you ready to accept the invitation of Jesus to stay with him and enter in a deeper relationship with him?