Your Holy Week Retreat, Part VIII – Good Friday Morning

This morning, as we stand between Christ’s appalling trial and His excruciating crucifixion, we stand in need of connection to Him. John’s “Book of Glory,” the 13th through 18th chapters of his gospel, leads us far into the transforming truth of Christ’s final moments of prayer, service, and community building. The meditation requires a slow reading that will take more time than the other exercises, but it is well worth it. Once more, ponder the details and keep track of what you want to tell Him.

(In case you don’t have access to your bible in hard copy or on line, the text appears below).

Chapter 13

The Washing of the Disciples’ Feet.* 

1Before the feast of Passover,* Jesus knew that his hour had come to pass from this world to the Father. He loved his own in the world and he loved them to the end.a 2The devil had already induced* Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot, to hand him over. So, during supper,b 3fully aware that the Father had put everything into his power and that he had come from God and was returning to God,c 4he rose from supper and took off his outer garments. He took a towel and tied it around his waist. 5* Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feetd and dry them with the towel around his waist. 6He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Master, are you going to wash my feet?” 7Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing, you do not understand now, but you will understand later.” 8Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “Unless I wash you, you will have no inheritance with me.”e 9Simon Peter said to him, “Master, then not only my feet, but my hands and head as well.” 10Jesus said to him, “Whoever has bathed* has no need except to have his feet washed, for he is clean all over; so you are clean, but not all.”f 11For he knew who would betray him; for this reason, he said, “Not all of you are clean.”g 

12So when he had washed their feet [and] put his garments back on and reclined at table again, he said to them, “Do you realize what I have done for you? 13You call me ‘teacher’ and ‘master,’ and rightly so, for indeed I am.h 14If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash one another’s feet. 15I have given you a model to follow, so that as I have done for you, you should also do.i 16Amen, amen, I say to you, no slave is greater than his master nor any messenger* greater than the one who sent him.j 17If you understand this, blessed are you if you do it. 18I am not speaking of all of you. I know those whom I have chosen. But so that the scripture might be fulfilled, ‘The one who ate my food has raised his heel against me.’k 19From now on I am telling you before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe that I AM. 20Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”l 

Announcement of Judas’s Betrayal.m 21When he had said this, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified, “Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.” 22The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant. 23One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved,* was reclining at Jesus’ side.n 24So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant. 25He leaned back against Jesus’ chest and said to him, “Master, who is it?”o 26Jesus answered, “It is the one to whom I hand the morsel* after I have dipped it.” So he dipped the morsel and [took it and] handed it to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot. 27After he took the morsel, Satan entered him. So Jesus said to him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.”p 28[Now] none of those reclining at table realized why he said this to him. 29Some thought that since Judas kept the money bag, Jesus had told him, “Buy what we need for the feast,” or to give something to the poor.q 30So he took the morsel and left at once. And it was night. 

The New Commandment. 31* When he had left, Jesus said,* “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him. 32[If God is glorified in him,] God will also glorify him in himself, and he will glorify him at once.r 33My children, I will be with you only a little while longer. You will look for me, and as I told the Jews, ‘Where I go you cannot come,’ so now I say it to you.s 34I give you a new commandment:* love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.t 35This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” 

Peter’s Denial Predicted. 36Simon Peter said to him, “Master, where are you going?” Jesus answered [him], “Where I am going, you cannot follow me now, though you will follow later.”u 37Peter said to him, “Master, why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.” 38Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for me? Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow before you deny me three times.”v

Chapter 14

Last Supper Discourses. 1* “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith* in God; have faith also in me. 2In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? 3* And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be.a 4Where [I] am going you know the way.”* 5Thomas said to him, “Master, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” 6Jesus said to him, “I am the way and the truth* and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.b 7If you know me, then you will also know my Father.* From now on you do know him and have seen him.”c 8Philip said to him, “Master, show us the Father,* and that will be enough for us.”d 9Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?e 10Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works.f 11Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works themselves.g 12Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these, because I am going to the Father.h 13And whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.i 14If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it. 

The Advocate. 15“If you love me, you will keep my commandments.j 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate* to be with you always,k 17the Spirit of truth,* which the world cannot accept, because it neither sees nor knows it. But you know it, because it remains with you, and will be in you.l 18I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.* 19In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me, because I live and you will live.m 20On that day you will realize that I am in my Father and you are in me and I in you.n 21Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me. And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him.”o 22Judas, not the Iscariot,* said to him, “Master, [then] what happened that you will reveal yourself to us and not to the world?”p 23Jesus answered and said to him, “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him.q 24Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; yet the word you hear is not mine but that of the Father who sent me. 

25“I have told you this while I am with you. 26The Advocate, the holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name—he will teach you everything and remind you of all that [I] told you.r 27Peace* I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.s 28* You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’t If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. 29And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe.u 30I will no longer speak much with you, for the ruler of the world* is coming. He has no power over me, 31but the world must know that I love the Father and that I do just as the Father has commanded me. Get up, let us go.

Chapter 15

The Vine and the Branches. 1* “I am the true vine,* and my Father is the vine grower.a 2He takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit, and everyone that does he prunes* so that it bears more fruit. 3You are already pruned because of the word that I spoke to you.b 4Remain in me, as I remain in you. Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in me. 5I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing. 6* c Anyone who does not remain in me will be thrown out like a branch and wither; people will gather them and throw them into a fire and they will be burned. 7If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask for whatever you want and it will be done for you.d 8By this is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.e 9As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love.f 10If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.g 

11“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.h 12This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.i 13* No one has greater love than this,j to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends,* because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father.k 16It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you.l 17This I command you: love one another.m 

The World’s Hatred.* 18“If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first.n 19If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.o 20Remember the word I spoke to you,* ‘No slave is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.p 21And they will do all these things to you on account of my name,* because they do not know the one who sent me.q 22If I had not come and spoken* to them, they would have no sin; but as it is they have no excuse for their sin.r 23Whoever hates me also hates my Father.s 24If I had not done works among them that no one else ever did, they would not have sin; but as it is, they have seen and hated both me and my Father.t 25But in order that the word written in their law* might be fulfilled, ‘They hated me without cause.’u 

26“When the Advocate comes whom I will send* you from the Father, the Spirit of truth that proceeds from the Father, he will testify to me.v 27And you also testify, because you have been with me from the beginning.w

Chapter 16

“I have told you this so that you may not fall away. 2They will expel you from the synagogues; in fact, the hour* is coming when everyone who kills you will think he is offering worship to God.a 3They will do this because they have not known either the Father or me.b 4I have told you this so that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you.c 

Jesus’ Departure; Coming of the Advocate.* “I did not tell you this from the beginning, because I was with you. 5But now I am going to the one who sent me, and not one of you asks me,* ‘Where are you going?’d 6But because I told you this, grief has filled your hearts. 7But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go. For if I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you.e But if I go, I will send him to you. 8* And when he comes he will convict the world in regard to sin and righteousness and condemnation: 9sin, because they do not believe in me;f 10righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; 11condemnation, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.g 

12“I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. 13* But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth.h He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming. 14He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. 15Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. 

16“A little while and you will no longer see me, and again a little while later and you will see me.”i 17So some of his disciples said to one another, “What does this mean that he is saying to us, ‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” 18So they said, “What is this ‘little while’ [of which he speaks]? We do not know what he means.” 19Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them, “Are you discussing with one another what I said, ‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me’? 20Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy.j 21When a woman is in labor, she is in anguish because her hour has arrived; but when she has given birth to a child, she no longer remembers the pain because of her joy that a child has been born into the world.k 22So you also are now in anguish. But I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you.l 23On that day you will not question me about anything. Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.m 24Until now you have not asked anything in my name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete. 

25* n “I have told you this in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures but I will tell you clearly about the Father. 26On that day you will ask in my name, and I do not tell you that I will ask the Father for you.o 27For the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have come to believe that I came from God. 28I came from the Father and have come into the world. Now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”p 29His disciples said, “Now you are talking plainly, and not in any figure of speech. 30Now we realize that you know everything and that you do not need to have anyone question you. Because of this we believe that you came from God.”* 31Jesus answered them, “Do you believe now? 32Behold, the hour is coming and has arrived when each of you will be scattered* to his own home and you will leave me alone. But I am not alone, because the Father is with me.q 33I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world.”r

Chapter 17

The Prayer of Jesus.* 1When Jesus had said this, he raised his eyes to heaven* and said, “Father, the hour has come. Give glory to your son, so that your son may glorify you,a 2* just as you gave him authority over all people,b so that he may give eternal life to all you gave him. 3* Now this is eternal life,c that they should know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ. 4I glorified you on earth by accomplishing the work that you gave me to do. 5Now glorify me, Father, with you, with the glory that I had with you before the world began.d 

6“I revealed your name* to those whom you gave me out of the world. They belonged to you, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7Now they know that everything you gave me is from you, 8because the words you gave to me I have given to them, and they accepted them and truly understood that I came from you, and they have believed that you sent me. 9I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for the ones you have given me, because they are yours,e 10and everything of mine is yours and everything of yours is mine, and I have been glorified in them.f 11And now I will no longer be in the world, but they are in the world, while I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are. 12When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me, and I guarded them, and none of them was lost except the son of destruction, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled.g 13But now I am coming to you. I speak this in the world so that they may share my joy completely.h 14I gave them your word, and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world.i 15* I do not ask that you take them out of the worldj but that you keep them from the evil one. 16They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. 17Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth.k 18As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world.l 19And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth. 

20“I pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, 21so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me.m 22And I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one, 23I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me. 24Father, they are your gift to me. I wish that where I am* they also may be with me, that they may see my glory that you gave me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world.n 25Righteous Father, the world also does not know you, but I know you, and they know that you sent me.o 26I made known to them your name and I will make it known,* that the love with which you loved me may be in them and I in them.” 

Chapter 18

Jesus Arrested.* 1When he had said this, Jesus went out* with his disciples across the Kidron valley to where there was a garden, into which he and his disciples entered.a 2Judas his betrayer also knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples. 3So Judas got a band of soldiers* and guards from the chief priests and the Pharisees and went there with lanterns, torches, and weapons.b 4Jesus, knowing everything that was going to happen to him, went out and said to them, “Whom are you looking for?” 5They answered him, “Jesus the Nazorean.”* He said to them, “I AM.” Judas his betrayer was also with them. 6When he said to them, “I AM,” they turned away and fell to the ground. 7So he again asked them, “Whom are you looking for?” They said, “Jesus the Nazorean.” 8Jesus answered, “I told you that I AM. So if you are looking for me, let these men go.” 9* c This was to fulfill what he had said, “I have not lost any of those you gave me.” 10Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it, struck the high priest’s slave, and cut off his right ear. The slave’s name was Malchus.* 11Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into its scabbard. Shall I not drink the cup* that the Father gave me?”d 

12e So the band of soldiers, the tribune, and the Jewish guards seized Jesus, bound him, 13and brought him to Annas* first. He was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year.f 14It was Caiaphas who had counseled the Jews that it was better that one man should die rather than the people.g 

Peter’s First Denial.h 15Simon Peter and another disciple* followed Jesus. Now the other disciple was known to the high priest, and he entered the courtyard of the high priest with Jesus. 16But Peter stood at the gate outside. So the other disciple, the acquaintance of the high priest, went out and spoke to the gatekeeper and brought Peter in. 17Then the maid who was the gatekeeper said to Peter, “You are not one of this man’s disciples, are you?” He said, “I am not.” 18Now the slaves and the guards were standing around a charcoal fire that they had made, because it was cold, and were warming themselves. Peter was also standing there keeping warm. 

The Inquiry before Annas.i 19The high priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and about his doctrine. 20Jesus answered him, “I have spoken publicly to the world. I have always taught in a synagogue or in the temple area* where all the Jews gather, and in secret I have said nothing.j 21Why ask me? Ask those who heard me what I said to them. They know what I said.” 22When he had said this, one of the temple guards standing there struck Jesus and said, “Is this the way you answer the high priest?”k 23Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong; but if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?” 24Then Annas sent him bound to Caiaphas* the high priest.l 

Peter Denies Jesus Again.m 25Now Simon Peter was standing there keeping warm. And they said to him, “You are not one of his disciples, are you?” He denied it and said, “I am not.” 26One of the slaves of the high priest, a relative of the one whose ear Peter had cut off, said, “Didn’t I see you in the garden with him?” 27Again Peter denied it. And immediately the cock crowed.* 

The Trial before Pilate. 28n Then they brought Jesus from Caiaphas to the praetorium.* It was morning. And they themselves did not enter the praetorium, in order not to be defiled so that they could eat the Passover. 29So Pilate came out to them and said, “What charge do you bring [against] this man?” 30They answered and said to him, “If he were not a criminal, we would not have handed him over to you.” 31At this, Pilate said to them, “Take him yourselves, and judge him according to your law.” The Jews answered him, “We do not have the right to execute anyone,”* 32* in order that the word of Jesus might be fulfilled that he said indicating the kind of deatho he would die. 33So Pilate went back into the praetorium and summoned Jesus and said to him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered, “Do you say this on your own or have others told you about me?” 35Pilate answered, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests handed you over to me. What have you done?”p 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom does not belong to this world. If my kingdom did belong to this world, my attendants [would] be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not here.”q 37So Pilate said to him, “Then you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say I am a king.* For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”r 38Pilate said to him, “What is truth?”s 

When he had said this, he again went out to the Jews and said to them, “I find no guilt in him. 39But you have a custom that I release one prisoner to you at Passover.* Do you want me to release to you the King of the Jews?” 40They cried out again, “Not this one but Barabbas!”* Now Barabbas was a revolutionary.