The historical Jesus was guarded in declaring his identity but by the time the Fourth Gospel was written, Christians had arrived at a rich understanding of the mystery of Jesus, the Son of God. John’s Gospel puts before the believer a grand assemblage of 7 I am sentences, rooted in the name of God in Exodus 3:14, I am who I am. I am the bread of life. (John 6:35, 48, 51); I am the light of the world (John 8:12; 9:5); I am the gate for the sheep (John 10:7, 9); I am the good shepherd (John 10:11, 14); I am the resurrection and the life (John 11:25); I am the way, and the truth, and the life (John 14:6); I am the true vine (John 15:1, 5). We are reminded that we believe first of all in a person, not in a philosophy. Anyone one of these images would take us deeply into our encounter with the Risen Lord, none more so than “I am the resurrection and the life.”
Jesus, present to us always, you wept at the tomb of your friend Lazarus. As we face the mystery of death, our own and that of those we love, help us to place our trust in you, the resurrection and the life. Amen.
Kieran O’Mahony, OSA