«Jesus also did many other things. If they were all written I suppose the whole world could not contain the books that would be written» (John 21:25).
John was probably one of the ones who most experienced that transformation we talked about. He started out wanting to split the earth with lightning and destroy people almost randomly, and ended up leaning his head on Jesus’s chest and writing letters about love. He began wanting to sit at the right hand of God’s throne, with all the worldly glory he expected, and ended up alone in an island, forgotten by the world but remembered by heaven, inspired in vision to see Him returning in majesty, on His throne full of heavenly glory… pleased to be where he was.
We spend almost a third of our lives in academic training. John’ s learning took place intensively in only three years. But it was enough.
He loved his Master. He was willing to imitate Him and change his character defects. So much so that if we were given two descriptions of his before and after, we would not realize they refer to the same person. How wonderful it would be if the same thing happened with us!
«The depth and fervor of John’s affection for his Master was not the cause of Christ’s love for him, but the effect of that love. John desired to become like Jesus , and under the transforming influence of the love of Christ he did become meek and lowly. Self was hid in Jesus» (The Acts of the Apostles, ch. 53, p. 544).
Today I invite you to read this gospel that is so full of unique content (because most of the things it mentions are not in the other gospels), that tells us of what happened before Creation, with an introduction none of the other gospel makes. There are no parables in it and only a handful of miracles are told, but its deep theology can teach us a lot about Jesus, His nature, His power, His mission and what He entrusted us with for each period of time.
John was at the foot of the cross and at the entrance of the empty tomb, and even though this world ‘ s books would not be enough to tell Jesus’s story, we can try to write the contemporary version of the love story between Jesus and us. There are hundreds of ways to do that, but each story is unique. Every Sabbath from now on will provide one more chance to do that.