New Testament: Gospels – Episodes 26 & 27

NT-Gospels-Title1-revEpisode Twenty-six and Episode Twenty-seven, the first of twenty focused on the Gospel of St. John in the AIC Bible Study Video series, New Testament: Gospels, were uploaded this week.  In Episode Twenty-six I explore the history, authorship & themes and offer some suggestions on how to read the Gospel of St. John, plus a reading of the first five verses of John 1,the opening words in St. John’s ground-breaking Prelude.  In Episode Twenty-seven I read and discuss the whole Prelude:  John 1:1-18.     Among the many examples of historic art depictions of St. John is a remarkable and colorful example from the Carolingian era of the revived Holy Roman Empire in western Europe.  The manuscript, The Benedictional of Aethelwold, a service book for the Mass by the Bishop of Winchester, based on the Gallican and Gregorian Sacramentaries, was protected by various noble families after the English Reformation.  It was acquired from the Duke of Devonshire, Chatsworth, Devonshire, by the British Library in 1958 A.D.  Below is the only illumination of a Gospel author that has survived, St. John with the traditional Eagle symbol.

John-Writing-Aethelwold Bened-Addl 49598_f019v-v2
St. John Writing His Gospel.  Illumination in colored inks and gold on parchment, The Benedictional of Aethelwold, made at Winchester, England, for the use of Aethelwold, Bishop of Winchester, 963-984 A.D.   Ms. Additional 49598, Folio 19v, British Library, London, England.  Perspective correction applied.

Watch the Video of Episode Twenty-six.          Listen to the Podcast (Episode 26)

Watch the Video of Episode Twenty-seven.       Listen to the Podcast (Episode 27)

The text and audio of the next two episodes (28, 29) will be released during the week of Oct. 27th, with two more episodes each week until the entire revised series is complete later this year.

As always, thank you for your interest and support.  May God bless you in all that you do in His Name! Amen!   Glory be to God for all things! Amen!

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First Sunday After Easter

Corkie and I got back from our first trip in the Volvo XC90 AWD late yesterday.  This morning I put together a short Podcast Homily for the First Sunday After Easter based on the prayer book readings from 1 John 5:4-12 and John 20:19-23.  LIsten to the Podcast

John-RohanMaster-15thCThese two readings are both highly-spiritual, in which St. John shares his first hand experience as a Disciple and his own passionate understanding of the importance of the Christian virtue of Love (from the Greek, agape) and the equality of the Holy Spirit with the Father and the Son (or the Word in the Gospel of St. John).  In his epistle he once again indulgences in a preference for stressing the importance of the symbolic number 3.  Three stands for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as well as for the three baptism-like symbols in his narrative:  the spirit, the water and the blood.  As he did in his Gospel account, he speaks of the Holy Spirit as witness of the Truth, meaning the Christian belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that through Him only can salvation be obtained.  In his Gospel, he frequently uses the comparison between Truth and Falsehood.  For those moderns who give advice on the need for inclusiveness, St. John offers unwanted stress upon the certainty that there is only one path to the Father:

And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.  He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

How much clearer can an Epistle be?

The Gospel account is unique in many ways.  It offers details of the appearance in the Upper Room, safely locked against possilbe intrusion by hostile Jews, including the granting to the faithful of the Peace of God, access by His breath to the Holy Spirit, and later, after the end of the reading, the comments of a skeptical Thomas, as well as providing the Scriptural basis for the Sacrament of Confession/Penance.  As I note in the Podcast Homily, the granting of the sacrament providing Absolution and Remission of sins is yet another example of God’s unqualified love, Agape, for His Creation.