Easter 5, Wednesday, Year B

Inspired by John 14:18-31

“I have said these things to you while I am still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you.” John 14:25-26 (NRSV)

Some people question why they should follow a religion based on writings that were first penned nearly two thousand years ago. Recognizing that those documents—the various letters and narratives that Christians call the New Testament of the bible—were written by specific people in a specific context for a specific purpose, they wonder what relevance the ideas of men who lived in the Middle East nearly two millennia ago could possibly have today.

If Christianity were based on the bible, then that would be a valid question. But the bible did not come first; Christianity did. The community of believers of Jesus Christ formed around his life and ministry, and grew from there. The writings we call the New Testament were not the basis for this community or for the faith that they shared, but a product of it.

The God we worship is triune: three persons, one God. God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God the Son was Jesus Christ, sent by God the Father to reveal the nature of God to humanity. God the Father also sent God the Holy Spirit, and that Spirit is with us to this day, encouraging us, inspiring us, reminding us of all that the Son taught us so long ago. For even though God the Son came into the world at a specific point in time in a specific geographical location and in a specific cultural context, his message of love and salvation are for all people at all times and in all places. It is the continuing work of the Spirit that keeps our faith in him alive, active, and relevant.

Let us pray. Triune God, your very being is relationship and love. Help us to recognize your Spirit working in our lives, that we may live in the current reality of the grace and salvation you offered through your Son. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.