May 19, 2019
First Presbyterian Church, Sterling, IL
Often for confirmation, we choose a focus scripture,
rather than what is in the Revised Common Lectionary.
But this time, the Lectionary accommodates us
with the perfect gospel choice in John 13:31-35.
The gospel of John asks lot of its readers.
John’s gospel does not always have a story line like the other gospels.
Sometimes it sounds more like a poem than a narrative;
most of the time it is concerned with symbols and signs.
In the thirteenth chapter, though,
we do enter into the part of the story
that is about to conclude with Jesus’ crucifixion.
The chapter begins: “Now before the festival of the Passover,
Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father.
Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.”
Jesus is gathered with his friends in an upper room in Jerusalem,
where they have come for the feast of the Passover.
To their surprise, he takes …