Over the next few weeks of the Easter Season at our week-end Masses we will reflect on the messages contained in the earlier chapters of the Gospel according to John. Today we read from the 10th Chapter of his Gospel story. The author of the Gospel places the following words on the lips of Jesus; “The sheep that belong to me listen to my voice; I know them and they follow me. I give them external life; they will never be lost…. No one will ever steal them”.
That message is the essence of the Easter revelation. “Not one of us will be lost!
Over the centuries people have distorted that message by promoting ideologies about the supremacy of one nation over another; about the superiority of one race over another; about the godliness of one political system compared with others; about the perfection of one religion compared to another.
These comparisons have led to bigotry, animosity, discrimination, racism, hatred and ultimately to war.
The Gospel says “the sheep that belong to me listen to my voice…. I give them eternal life”. It does not say “some belong to me”. Nor does it say “I give a number of special people eternal life”. The revelation of the Sacred Scriptures is about universal salvation and eternal life.