"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me. There are many rooms in my Father's house. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going away to prepare a place for you? And if I am going away to prepare a place for you, I will come again and will welcome you into my presence, so that you may be where I am. You know where I am going, and you know the way."
Thomas said to him, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you have known me, you will also know my Father. From now on you know him and have seen him." Philip said to him, "Lord, show us the Father, and that will satisfy us." Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? The person who has seen me has seen the Father. So how can you say, 'Show us the Father'? You believe, don't you, 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. It is the Father who dwells in me who does his works.
Believe me, I am in the Father and the Father is in me. Otherwise, believe me because of the works themselves. "Truly, truly I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I am doing. He will do even greater works than these because I am going to the Father. I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me for anything in my name, I will do it."
"Strike the Tents" "Kiss me, Hardy" "Such is life!" Question: What do these three phrases have in common? Answer: They each have three words in them! Better answer: They are all the last words of famous men (Robert E. Lee, Lord Nelson and Ned Kelly, respectively).
Now I don't know why so many famous last words come in three's ('Et tu Brute') but I do know that in some cultures people take your last words very seriously, believing that a person's whole life can be encapsulated in their final words.
I find that a rather disturbing theory, as I suspect that my final utterance will probably be "urrghhh", which I hope will be a less than adequate summary of my life. Even so, I can appreciate why people take a person's last words seriously, and I think we should take a person's last words seriously, which is why I want to exhort you to listen up to our Gospel reading today as they contain some of Jesus' last words.
These words from John chapter 14 are not Jesus' last last words, of course. Those last last words, spoken from the cross, are the ones we reflected upon a few weeks back now on Good Friday, but these are amongst His last words, taken from a dialogue that took place during the Last Supper – a dialogue generally referred to in scholarly circles as 'the final discourse'.
And if you read through the whole discourse you'll find that it does read like someone's last words – a little like the conversation that takes place around the bedside of someone who knows that their time is short, with their children huddled about, feeling distressed and confused and wondering what is going to happen.
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