Psalms: 85, 86
Gospel: 8:21-32
Patristic Reading: An excerpt from A Treatise on Prayer by Tertullian

If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples;…you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free. (John 8:31-32)

The quote above has been hijacked in 1000 different ways. In its current usage, the Truth refers not to Jesus…but to speaking human truth. Of being authentic to oneself, and to avoid lying.

This is all well and good….and contains some merit to be sure….but it is not what the author of John is getting at.

One cannot read this verse without anticipating another popular verse from the fourth Gospel:

I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)

So the truth that Jesus speaks of that gives us freedom is not based on human freedom, but divine freedom.

So what do we gain? Exactly what freedom is bestowed upon us?

First and foremost there is a freedom in knowledge. In knowing that Jesus is the Word who has come to dwell among us. That realization alone is priceless… it gives us a life to emulate. More than that, the truth of Jesus also gives us freedom from our sin, and of our perpetual habit to look after our own interests and trample on those who get in our way.

We gain freedom from ourselves…of our own insecurities and the things that hold us back. By keeping our eyes on Christ we are given the freedom to do things that build up and bear witness to the Kingdom of God….and enable us to do more in the service of God than we could ever ask or imagine. +