LÖHE ON JOHN 21:24

JohnThis is the disciple who testifies to these things and who wrote them down. We know that his testimony is true. (John 21:24 NIV)

Saint John, the Evangelist, has the eagle as an emblem. His perspective penetrates the sunny heights, where we can’t follow him. His flight is so high and majestic as it appears simple and easy. We follow him with our eyes, amazed  just as we listen to his flight. Who is able to follow him in the spirit and fathom the words he utters? This is not the teaching of some teacher, but rather the revelation of God’s apostle and prophet, who elaborates divine mysteries and pens down his profound wisdom and theology.

Is there anybody who can fathom and penetrate the epistle of our day in a profound and meaningful way?  Don’t we all have to admit that we are more like swimmers, who are just paddling on the surface of the oceans? Or somewhat like that youth Saint Augustine mentions, who was trying to empty the seas of this world by using his breakfast bowl?

Almighty, heavenly Father! We thank your holy name, that you have proclaimed forgiveness of sins, righteousness and eternal life through your beloved Apostles. We ask you from the bottom of our heart, that you would lead and guide us by your Holy Spirit, that we follow their doctrine, faith and patience willingly and remain in this saving faith faithfully until the very end. Bless and keep us and ours in this night and grant us your peace. Amen.

Look up to the heavenly heights, the starry skies and the circling eagles flight. Eternal suns, holy graces inviting to his beautiful throne. Follow your divine calling. The endless expanses are opening up and the most distant ages are drawing nearer pulled close by God’s love central. (“Volat avis sine meta” by Hermann von Bezzel, 1861-1917)

This is a rather free translation of Wilhelm Löhe’s devotion for Monday after the first Sunday after Easter: Quasimodogeniti. It is found on Pg. 167 in Lob sei Dir ewig, o Jesu!   (Eternal Praise to you o Jesus!) edited by A. Schuster and published in the Freimund Verlag, Neuendettelsau 1949.

About Wilhelm Weber

Pastor at the Old Latin School in the Lutherstadt Wittenberg
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