John: something from nothing

After a few weeks since my first post on my class on John's gospel and letters, here's another snippet from our class on John 6.

In the passage, John contrasts the disciples questioning of what is possible and a child's offering. In the Greek, there is a play on words in verse 8 in that the disciple Andrew is the man (the Greek word for man is andros) and thus the one who is expected to be able to provide. Yet, he brings to Jesus instead a child (the Greek word is paidarion, a form of pais or paidos which could refer to a boy or girl since children were seen as without gender in some ways.) paidos could also be translated as slave, reiterating the idea of someone who is 'without,' without rights or possessions and often seen as without capacity. Moreover, the incapacity of the child-slave is emphasized by the tiny amount of food carried.
five barley loaves and two fish...What are they amongst so many people?
John 6.9
Yet true to form, Jesus sees the gifts and potential offered, finding riches amongst those society trivializes or ignores.

Today I'm working on a class presentation on John 14 (highlights to follow?!) I read a beautiful reflection entitled Journey Toward Wholeness by Frederick Buechner:
http://theologytoday.ptsem.edu/jan1993/v49-4-article1.htm

Comments