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.
18”I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. 19In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live. 20On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. 21They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.”
Translation: "If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another, a One-called-alongside, so that he might be with you into the eternal, the spirit of the truth, whom the world has not been able to receive because it can neither see nor know him. You know him, because he abides alongside you and is in you. I will not leave you orphans. I come to you. A little while and the world will see me no longer, but you see me. Because I live, you will live also. On that day, you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, I in you. The one having my commandments, and keeping them, that one is loving me, and the one loving me will be loved by my Father. And I will love them, and I will show forth myself to them."
Background and situation: Last week's reading, John 14: 1-14, is the beginning of the farewell discourses in the fourth gospel. This week's reading is the following six verses. Last week, the emphasis was on trust in Jesus. This week, the emphasis is on love for Jesus.
Not surprisingly, the farewell discourses open with appeals to trust and love, both major themes of the fourth gospel. In fact, what is rather surprising, when you think about it, is that love for Jesus is a minor theme in the New Testament, almost non-existent outside of the fourth gospel. In the fourth gospel, however, love for Jesus is a major theme, strongly emphasized.
Love counters fear. The text seems designed to provide comfort for the community in the absence of Jesus, as if to say, "Don't worry. Everything will be all right." You will have help. What's more, Jesus says, "I come to you." The verb is present tense, meaning that Jesus is always a present reality.