8Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.” 9Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. 11Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves.
12Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. 13I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14If in my name you ask me for anything, I will do it.
15”If you love me, you will keep my commandments. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. 17This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you.
Translation: Philip said to him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us." Jesus said to him, "I am with you a lengthy time and you do not know me, Philip?" The one who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Do you not trust that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak from myself, but the Father abiding in me does his works. Trust me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me. But if not, trust the works themselves.
"Truly, Truly, I say to you, the one trusting into me, the works which I am doing, that one will do also, and that one will do greater than these, for I am going to the Father. And whatever you might ask in my name, that I will do so that the Father might be glorified in the Son. Whatever you might ask in my name, I will do.
"If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give to you another One-Called-Alongside that may be with you into the eternal, the Spirit of Truth, which the universe is not able to receive because it does not see him nor knows him. You know him for he abides alongside you and he will be in you."
Philip says, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough (arkei) for us." Philip had earlier worried that they would not have "enough" (arkousin) food to feed the large crowd (6:7). In his scant two utterances in the fourth gospel, Philip is portrayed as fussing that what they have is not enough. The food had not been enough, and now Jesus is not quite enough either.
Jesus responds, "I am with you a lengthy time--chronos--and you do not know--ginosko--me, Philip?" The word chronos refers to earthly, chronological time. It is distinct from kairos, which is "special time"--the in-breaking of God.
In ordinary experience--in ordinary "time"--one cannot "know" Jesus. (The word translated as "know" is ginosko, which is knowing in an intimate, mystical way.) It is not length of chronological time that leads to mystical "knowing", but rather apperception of Jesus. "The one who has seen me has seen the Father," he says. "Seeing" (orao, used here twice) is one of the fourth gospel's ways of saying "gets it."
Jesus tells them that his words are the same as the "Father's works." Then, he tells them that if they cannot believe his words, they should turn to his works. The fourth gospel progresses from speaking of the "Father's works" to Jesus' own works to the disciples' works. What's more, they will do even greater works than Jesus!
What could they possibly do that would be "greater" than what Jesus has already done in the fourth gospel? Jesus has healed the sick and raised the dead. What can they do to top that? One thing remains: They have not yet established an on-going community centered in Jesus, which follows him, and does his works.
Jesus assures the disciples that, even though the path of following him may be difficult, they can call on him and he will do "whatever you ask in my name." In order to emphasize Jesus' continuing help, the fourth gospel twice has Jesus say that whatever is asked in his name, he "will do."
These identical sentences are framed around the statement that the Father "will be glorified in the Son." These Son-inspired and Son-assisted works of the disciples glorify the Father because they show forth the Father's ways on earth.
Asking in Jesus' name is not, of course, a flinging about of Jesus' name as some kind of magic charm in order to get what a person wants. That is mere egocentrity. It asks in our name, but not that of Jesus. To ask in Jesus' name, as Ray Brown has said, means to be in union with Jesus. To ask in Jesus name is, as Paul put it, having the same mind that was in Christ Jesus (Philippians 2). The appropriate questions are: What would Jesus ask? What would Jesus think? Indeed, WWJD?
"If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give to you another Advocate that may be with you into the eternal, the Spirit of Truth, which the universe is not able to receive because it does not see him nor knows him. You know him for he abides alongside you and he will be in you."
One of the major themes of the fourth gospel is love. The word appears 57 times in fourth gospel, and the two great commandments are to love God and love one another. The followers of Jesus "will keep" the commandment to love. This is not so much an order--"you will keep, dagnabbit"--but a simple statement of fact, i.e. this is how followers of Jesus live.
The "yous" in this text are all plural, meaning that Jesus' remarks are addressed to the community. They are to keep his commandments, although he has only really given one actual commandment, which is to "love one another" (13: 34-35).
The use of the word "commandments"--plural--invites a comparison with other "commandments," such as those given to Moses in the Torah. For the fourth gospel, Jesus one commandment--"love one another"--is placed on a higher level than all the Law of Moses.
The word parakletos is formed from para, which means "alongside," and kletos, which means "called." Literally, the parakletos is "the one called alongside." The word appears to come from the Greek law courts where it referred to one who helped in court, i.e. an advocate, or one who pleads your case.
Parakletos does not appear in the Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Old Testament). Related words, such as paraklesis and parakaleo are used to translate the Hebrew hacham. Hacham means "comfort". It appears in Psalm 23: "thy road and thy staff, they comfort (hacham) me."
Taking the two strands--the secular use and Hebrew use--we arrive at a definition for parakletos that combines the concepts of help and comfort. The parakletos is an advocate for our case before God, and one who comforts in times of difficulty. Translations of parakletos include Advocate, Counselor, Helper, Comforter, Defender, Intercessor.
Note, too, that this is "another One-Called-Alongside." In the fourth gospel, Jesus himself is the first. He is "full of...truth" (1:14) and the other One-Called-Alongside that he will give is "the Spirit of Truth." The world cannot "receive" the One-Called-Alongside because the world neither "sees" nor "knows" him. This should not be surprising since the world did not "see" or "know" the first parakletos, Jesus himself (1:10-12).
The followers of Jesus, however, do know the One-Called-Alongside because the he "abides"--menein, lives, dwells, remains--"alongside" (par' humin) them. This is classic fourth gospel. The author cannot say enough about the mutual indwelling between the Father, Jesus, and the followers of Jesus.
Incidentally, I am using "he" as a pronoun to refer to the One-Called-Alongside because parakletos is masculine in Greek. Pneuma, the Greek word for "spirit," is of neither gender, while the Hebrew ruach is feminine.
For those including vss. 25-27:
25 ‘I have said these things to you while I am still with you. 26But 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.
27Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. Peace I leave to you. My peace I give to you, not as the universe gives, I myself give to you. Let not let your heart be troubled, and let it not be timid.
Translation: These things I have spoken to you abiding alongside you, but the One-Called-Alongside, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, that one will teach you all things, and will remind you of all I have said to you.
Peace I leave to you. My peace I give to you, not as the universe gives, I myself give to you. Let not let your heart be troubled, and let it not be timid.
These verses were included in the reading for Easter 5. Comment is here.