Friday, March 23, 2007

Who ARE you?

I know that I've mentioned my love of CSI before. But here I go again. I love the opening title song, "Who are you?" by, of course, The Who. I often mock it at home by singing a nondescript "ew-wah, ew,ew,ew,ew" to the same tune.

Who ARE you? Major parts of each episode are spent trying to discover the identities and stories of the cadavers laying on the autopsy table. In fact, that journey is a major element of the series' appeal, at least to me.

Who ARE you? It's the Christological question which consumes the author of John's gospel. The answer, as discussed in a previous post, is the One who does the Father's will. Jesus lives so completely in the bosom of the Father that He and God are best described as one.

A companion question is "where are you FROM? That's evident in today's Gospel reading- John 8:1-11. It's the first century Mediterranean basin way of asking the same question. If one knew where someone was from, you could identify who they were, because their self identity was drawn primarily from the community in which they lived. Witness "Jesus of Nazareth", "Lazarus of Bethany" etc.

In the case of our Lord the answer to both who and where from is the same. The Father. Jesus descended from the Father to show us the way and lead us back to him. The followers of Jesus in John's gospel are all caught up in that identity and the journey of return to God.

Who ARE you? So finally we get to the point. When I hear Jesus's words I am looking into a mirror, held up to me by God. I am required by that gaze to ask the questions.

Who am I?
Where am I from ?
Where am I going?

Important questions to ask and answer in the presence of God.

"When we contemplate the blessings of faith even now, as if gazing at a reflection in a mirror, it is as if we already possessed the wonderful things which our faith assures us we shall one day enjoy."

-- St. Basil, De Spiritu Sancto

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