THE GREAT GOSPEL OF JOHN
VOLUME 1

Jesus' Precepts and Deeds through His Three Years of Teaching

First day in Sychar

- Chapter 49 -
At Sychar. Hints on the how and where of true worship. Irhael's commendable talk. 'Not houses of prayer, but refuges and hospitals for the poor you shall build Me'. Allusion to the temple of the Creation.


 
S
ays the high priest: 'I am sorted out now and hope that this entire district also shall be so in a short time. But allow me just another question, and this consists in: Are we to still honour the mountain and your old House, and honour your Sabbaths there, or should we erect a new House here, to meet in Your name? If the latter is Your will then You might want tomorrow to point out the appropriate spot most pleasing to you, and we should then do everything to accommodate Your desire therein too.'
 
2
Say I: 'Friend, that which is the right thing for you and mankind at large I have already made known to you on the mountain today.
 
3
But for the keeping of same it requires neither the old House on the Mount, and still less a new one in town, but only your believing hearts and a firm and good will.
 
4
When I came here yesterday and took a rest at Jacob's well, encountering Irhael, she too when recognising Me more closely asked Me whether God is to be worshipped on Gerizim or in the temple at Jerusalem. Let her tell you what answer I gave her!'
 
5
Here the high priest turns to Irhael, and she says, 'The Lord spoke to me thus:
 
6
'The hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship God neither upon Gerizim nor in the temple at Jerusalem! For God is a Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth!' This the Lord spoke; you are a high priest and shall know what is to be done henceforth!
 
7
My view is that since the Lord has bestowed such exceeding Grace upon us all and took lodging in this house, which is not mine but is His and shall remain so, this house should remain a memorable one for ever, and we want to assemble in it in His name always and honour the Sabbath in His glory!'
 
8
Says the high priest: 'Yes, yes, you are quite right, if only we were all believers; but some consideration has to be also given to the weak! These would be offended even more!'
 
9
I said; 'Irhael is right! Whoever is offended - well, let him be offended and climb his mountain! Once he no longer finds anything there, he will start thinking of something better.
 
10
Do not in future build houses of prayer for Me but guest houses and refuges for the poor who can not pay you!
 
11
In the love of your poor brothers and sisters shall you be My true worshippers, and in such houses of prayer I shall be frequently among you, without you necessarily becoming aware of it; but in temples built for worshipping Me with the lips, as it has been till now, I shall henceforth dwell no more than man's intellect would in his little toe.
 
12
If notwithstanding you have to awaken your hearts towards Me and enter upon the right humility in an exalted temple, then move outside into the temple of My Creations, and sun, moon and all the stars and the sea, the mountains and the trees and the birds of the air, as also the fish in the water and the countless flowers of the fields shall proclaim My glory to you!'
 
13
Say, is not the tree more glorious than all the splendour of the temple at Jerusalem?! A tree is a pure work of God, it has its life and brings forth nourishing fruit. But what does the temple bring forth? I say unto you: nothing but arrogance, anger, envy, the most blatant jealousy and domineering; because it is not God's, but the vain work of man.
 
14
Verily, verily I say unto you all; he who shall honour, love and therewith worship Me by doing good to his brothers and sisters in My name shall have his everlasting reward in heaven; but he who henceforth honours Me with all kinds of ceremonies in a temple built especially for this shall also have his temporal reward from the temple! When however after the death of his flesh he shall come to Me and say: 'Lord, Lord, have mercy on me, your servant', I shall then say unto him: 'I do not know you; hence depart from Me and seek your reward with him who you served!' For this reason you too should henceforth have nothing more to do with any temple!
 
15
But in this present house you may always assemble in My remembrance, whether on a Sabbath or other day, because every day is the Lord's and not just the Sabbath, on which you can in the future do good just as on any other day.'