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John 14 – The Way, the Truth and the Life & The Roots of the Bible

Finger Pointing UpPaul’s friend, Lydia from Thyatire, sold purple also (Acts 16:14).

Tomorrow we will look at…

John 14
The Way, the Truth and the Life

1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.

1 Workers hanging
Workers hanging up clothing to dry, wall painting from a dye shop (fullonica) at Pompeii
The Romans had to turn their material with a manual spinner. Iron alum was used as the base fixing agent and it is known that the marine gastropod, Haustellum brandaris, was used as a red dye, due to its purple-red colorant; the color of the emperor.

The dye was imported from Tyre, Lebanon and was used primarily by wealthy women. Cheaper versions were also produced by counterfeiters. A more widely used tint was indigo, allowing blue or yellow shades, while madder, a dicotyledon angiosperm, produced a shade of red and was one of the cheapest dyes available.

According to Pliny the Elder, a blackish color was preferred to red. Yellow, obtained from saffron, was expensive and reserved for the clothing of married women or the Vestal Virgins. There were far fewer colors than in the modern era.

2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.

5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?

6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.

8 Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.

9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?

10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

11 Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake.

12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

“In my name” – not simply prayer that mentions Jesus’ name, but prayer in accordance with all that the person who bears the name is.  It is prayer aimed at carrying forward the work Jesus did, prayer that He Himself will answer.

14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.

2 The decorations
The decorations on unbleached flax and purple wool reproduce geometrical and vegetal motifs identical with those of the sculptures and mosaics of the same period.

In Egypt, the paintings of the third and fourth centuries often represent the dead clad in garments ornamented in the same way. These fashions spread throughout the whole of the Mediterranean basin, as one can examine in mosaics (Piazza Armerina, Sicily) and paintings in the Roman catacombs.

15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.

16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever;

17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

“The Spirit of truth” – in essence and in action the Spirit is characterized by truth.  He brings people to the truth of God.  All three persons of the Trinity are linked with truth.

18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

“I will come to you” – the words relate to the coming of the Spirit, but Jesus also speaks of His own appearances after the resurrection and at His second coming.

19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.

20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.

“At that day ye shall know” – the resurrection would radically change their thinking, and it did and with them at the time, as it does with us today. 

21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

“Keepeth…loveth” – love for Christ and keeping His commands cannot be separated.  It is impossible to love Jesus and not keep his commandments.

22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?

3 Roman marble
Roman marble torso from the 1st century AD, showing a woman’s clothing.
After the 2nd century BC, besides tunics, women wore a simple garment known as a stola and usually followed the fashions of their Greek contemporaries.

Stolae typically comprised two rectangular segments of cloth joined at the side by fibulae and buttons in a manner allowing the garment to drape freely over the front of the wearer.

Over the stola, women often wore the palla, a sort of shawl made of an oblong piece of material that could be worn as a coat, with or without hood, or draped over the left shoulder, under the right arm, and then over the left arm.

23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.

25 These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you.

26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

“Comforter” – the Holy Ghost.

“Bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you” – when someone accepts Jesus into their heart the Holy Ghost also enters their heart. 

When Jesus said, “Whatsoever I have said unto you” He’s not talking about only what He had said to His disciples and others, but what is written in the Bible.

27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.

“My Father is greater than I” – while Jesus was a man on earth the Father was greater and Jesus could do nothing without the Father.  Yet, because Jesus had absolute faith in the Father all that wanted was done (cf. 1 Jn 5:14-15).

29 And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe.

30 Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.

“Prince of this world – see 12:31.

4 Statue of the Emperor
Statue of the Emperor Tiberius showing the draped toga of the 1st century A.D.
Clothing in ancient Rome generally comprised the toga, the tunic, the stola, brooches for these, and breeches.

“Hath nothing in me” – Satan has a hold on people because of their fallen state.  Since Christ was sinless, Satan could have no hold on Him.

31 But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.

“As the Father gave me commandments, even so I do” – Jesus had stressed the importance of His followers being obedient and He set the example.  With these words He goes to fulfill His mission.

The Roots of the Bible

Israeli archaeologists have uncovered three rare, Roman-era fabrics believed to have been dyed using murex snail extracts in unique colors mentioned in the Bible.

Israel Antiquities Authority researchers say they have identified three pieces of cloth dyed in colors considered the most valued at the time, including special shades of blue, purple and crimson-scarlet — colors cited in scripture.

The textiles are believed to have been used in the clothing of wealthy residents 2,000 years ago.

“The importance of this fabric is extremely significant as there are practically no parallels for it in the archaeological record,” Yoli Shwartz, Israel Antiquities Authority spokeswoman said in a statement.

5 One of the rare
One of the rare fabrics archaeologists found in the Judean Desert.
The purple shade was considered to have been the most valued of the pigments used during the period, the Hebrew website Walla reported.

One of the rare fabrics archaeologists found in the Judean Desert

In the book of Exodus chapter 25, God gives Moses instructions for building the tabernacle during which blue and purple and scarlet yarns were specified. These were also the colors to be used for the making of the priestly garments, as described in Exodus chapter 27.

The fabrics were discovered in the Wadi Murabba‘at caves south of Qumran, the area in which the Dead Sea Scrolls were found during the 1940s and 1950s.

The unique make of the fabrics was discovered during a wider study of 180 textiles found in Judean Desert caves conducted by Dr. Naama Sukenik.

6 Murex dyed fabrics
Murex-dyed fabrics reached their peak in popularity during the Hellenistic-Roman period, researchers believe.

“Among the many textiles, most of which were dyed using substances derived from plants, were two purple-bordeaux [crimson] colored textiles – parts of tunics that were double dyed utilizing two of the most expensive materials in antiquity: Murex trunculus (Hexaplex trunculus) and  American Cochineal insect,” the Israel Antiquities Authority spokeswoman added.

The Tazpit News Agency further explained:

“A third textile, made of wool, indicating the thread fibers were dyed by exposing them to sunlight or heated after having been dyed, represent another use of the murex snail for achieving a shade of blue, and it is possible that the item in question is an indigo fabric made by means of a technique similar to making the tekhelet (blue) in tzitzit, the four-fringed garment worn by Jews.”

The purple shade was considered to have been the most valued of the pigments used during the period, the Hebrew website Walla reported.

7 Coptic textiles
Coptic textiles had many uses during Egypt’s Christian period, including bed sheets and covers, towels, napkins, tablecloths and carrying sacks, while in churches and other public buildings, these decorative fabrics were used for curtains and hangings.

“Fabrics dyed purple testified to the prestige of the garment and to the social status of its owner. In some periods, purple clothing was permitted to the emperor and his family only,” Walla reported, adding that the price of the dye at times reached the price of gold.

Israel Antiquities Authority researchers say they still don’t know how the pricey fabrics got into the caves.

One theory is they may have belonged to Jewish refugees on the run during the Bar Kochba Revolt which began in 132-136 A.D., during which the Jews rebelled against Roman Empire rule of the Holy Land.

Alternatively, the clothing may have belonged to a Roman military unit living in the caves.

…the largest cities since 4000 B.C.

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