Jn 6:24

Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes in the one who sent me has eternal life and will not come to condemnation, but has passed from death to life. [1]

Three elements: Jesus, hearing his word, and believing in the Father.  While Jesus continually identifies Himself with the Father, [Jn 10:30; 14:8; 17:21] He always defers to the Father.  It is the Father in whom we must believe.  It is the Father whose words He speaks: I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and speak.[Jn 12:49]

And the promise is two-fold: A person who hears Jesus and believes (a) has eternal life and (b) avoids condemnation but passes directly from death to life, passing Go(d) and collecting eternal rewards.

Is this an example of the Hebraic poetic pension for repetition of the same thought in different words or is there something more here?  Even the Psalmic repetitions throw light on one another.

Eternal life is evidenced by coming, hearing and believing; these constitute eternal life.  These acts are the recognition and acceptance of repentance and salvation, the “be it done unto me according to Your word…not my will but Yours be done.” [Lk 1:38; 22:42]

Condemnation, on the other hand, is the result of recognition and rejection of repentance and salvation.  It is the result of a conscious, a “known with” full awareness, act of the will.  It is not an imposition of an external judgment, but the inevitable result of an internal decision.  We condemn, we act “with harm” against, ourselves.

By the conscious act of choosing to hear and believe, the condemnation which we had incurred through the choice, the willed act, of our first parents, and which we had continued to choose in each sin we committed, by rejecting those decisions, i.e. repenting, “being sorry again,” Jesus looks around and asks Has no one condemned you including yourself? Neither do I condemn you. Go, [and] from now on do not sin any more.” [Jn 8:10-11] We dodged the bullet, we were dead and now live; we have resurrected…mini-wise in anticipation of the general resurrection, we have passed from death to life.  Amen.  Alleluia!!!

[1] Scripture texts in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Washington, D.C. and are used by permission of the copyright owner. All Rights Reserved. No part of the New American Bible may be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

“a sound” Acts 2:1

“A sound”  Acts 2:1 We normally don’t think of God as manifested in sound. Yet, like every other sense, God is there. The ancient Jews blocked their ears when God talked directly to them and begged Moses to speak to them instead. Elijah finally worshipped God in a still small voice. The Psalmist acclaim God’s might and power in a voice that breaks the cedars of Lebanon. The Angels announce and sing at Jesus Birth. The Word is spoken by God and is the Son and the Word, God’s Speech, becomes creation, and ultimately, becomes the God-Man.

God speaks only One Word…eternally, forever, and thus the sounds we hear each and every, the sounds all over the world, all over the universe, the symphony of the stars, the prayers of the saints, the pleas of the purged, the sighs of the sensient, are all the present syllable of that One Word. Unfortunately, because of sin, that universal syllable also echoes with the screams of the persecuted, the last gasps of the dying, the moans of the injured and ill, the lies of the deceitful, the mockery and curses of the evil, all of which Jesus heard and absorbed on the Cross for us. An eternal “Thank You, Praise You, Worship You, Serve You,” is the only appropriate, the only human, the only faith-filled response, though its inadequacy is self-evident. God himself, in praying “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani,” in inexpressible groanings, makes up that inadequacy for his beloved. Amen. Alleluia!!!