SBL 1999
Papers Presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature
Boston, MA - November 20-23, 1999

Bye-Word: A "Soul Reading" of Jesus' Farewell Discourse (John 13-17)
Michael Willett Newheart, Howard University School of Divinity

Presented to the SBL "Johannine Literature Section" on Sunday 11/23/99
[Copyright 1999, by Michael Newheart]]

(I dedicate the reading of this paper to a friend and former colleague David Nelson Duke of William Jewell College.)

I am taking this paper from my work in progress Word and Soul: A Psychological, Literary, and Cultural Reading of the Fourth Gospel, to be published in the next year or so by Liturgical Press. In it I develop a "soul hermeneutic" and apply it to the Fourth Gospel. This hermeneutic consists of three elements: analytical/archetypal psychology, which reorients psychology to "the study of the soul"; African-American cultural experience, which is often characterized as "soul"; and reader-response criticism, which emphasizes that the reading of a text is shaped by the reader's psychological and social location, or "soul state."

In this essay I read "soulfully" sections of Jesus' first farewell discourse (his "bye-word"), John 14:1-31. I have provided you my own translation of the passage. I will playfully engage Jesus' images and rhythms in this discourse. I will next identify likenesses to these images and rhythms in twentieth-century African-American poetry, and I will conclude by briefly noting the likenesses in my own soul.

[The handout contained the following translation of John 14:1-31:]

"Don't let your hearts be stirred up.
You believe into god; believe also into me.
In my father's house are many dwelling places.
If it weren't so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?
And if I go and prepare a place for you,
I'll come again and take you to myself,
so that where I am you might be too.
And you know the way where I am going."
Thomas says to him,
"Master, we don't know where you are going.
How can we know the way?"
Jesus says to him,
"I am the way and the truth and the life.
No one comes to the father except through me.
If you know me, you will know my father too.
And from now on you do know him and have seen him."
Philip says to him,
"Master, show us the father, and we will be satisfied."
Jesus says to him,
"Haven't I been with you all this time, and still you don't know me, Philip?
The one who has seen me has seen the father.
How can you say, 'Show us the father'?
Don't you believe that I am in the father and the father is in me?
The words that I speak to you I don't speak from myself,
but the father dwelling in me does his works.
Believe me that I'm in the father and the father is in me;
but if not, believe because of the works themselves.

Amen amen I say to you,
the one who believes into me will do the works that I do
and will do greater works than these because I go to the father.
And whatever you ask in my name I will do it,
so that the father might be glorified in the son.
If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.

If you love me you will keep my commandments.
And I will ask the father and he will give you another paraclete,
who will be with you forever:
the spirit of truth, which the world cannot receive,
because it does not see it or know it.
You know it, because it dwells with you and will be in you.
I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.
Yet a little while and the world will no longer see me,
but you will see me.
Because I live you will live too.
In that day you will know that I am in my father and you are in me and I am in you.
The one who has my commandments and keeps them is the one who loves me,
and the one who loves me will be loved by my father,
and I will love that one and will reveal myself to that one."

Judas, not Iscariot, says to him,
 "Master, how will you reveal yourself to us and not to the world?"
Jesus answered and said to him,
"The one who loves me will keep my word,
and my father will love that one,
and we will come and make our dwelling place with that one.
The one who does not love me does not keep my words;
and the word that you hear is not mine but the father's who sent me.

 "I have spoken these things to you while I remain with you;
but the paraclete, the holy spirit, whom the father will send in my name,
will teach you all things and will remind you of all that I have said to you.

 "Peace I leave with you,
my peace I give to you;
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Don't let your hearts be stirred up
nor let them shrink back.
You heard that I said to you,
    'I am going away, and I am coming to you.'
If you loved me,
you would have rejoiced that I go to the father,
because the father is greater than I.
And now I have spoken to you before it comes to be,
so that when it comes to be,
you will believe.
I will no longer speak much to you,
for the ruler of the world is coming;
and he does not have anything in me,
but so that the world might know that I love the father,
and just as the father has commanded me, so I do.
Rise, let's go forward!"
Playing with the Images of the Discourse

It is now night-Nicodemus-coming, Judas-going night (3:2; 13:30). (Satan-entered Judas goes on washed feet, though he's not clean, 13:5, 10.) It is night . . . but it is light night because it is son-of-humanity-and-god-glorified night, in which Jesus goes where his lil-chillun no-come (13:31-33). Before going, Jesus new-commands them lovingly (13:34-35) and then tells Simon that he will peter out. He will neither follow Jesus nor for him life-lay-down but pre-cock-crowing he will crow his own denial thricely (13:38). (Simon contrasts with the Lazarus-like disciple whom Jesus loves, who is in his bosom and asks for Peter who the betrayer is, 13:23-25. What a group of disciples: a denier, a betrayer and a bosom buddy!)

Jesus now begins his farewell discourse[1]  to the disciples, his "bye-word." (Bye, word. Bye-bye, fleshy word.) As he goes dis course, will the disciples fare well? Well, well. (This well is deep, and we don't have a bucket! 4:11) Jesus tells his disciples that they will fare well if they don't let their hearts get stirred up. (They'll have Jesus' peace, 14:27.) (But who's going to stir up their hearts? Judas-entering Satan? Jesus-glorifying god?) They already into-god believe; they need also to into-Jesus believe (because after all, god sent Jesus, 12:44). Jesusfathershouse, which is not the temple but Jesus' body (2:16, 21), is many-dwellinged. Lots of room for father and son and children to gather into one (11:52). Jesus goes there (Why does he need to go to his fathershouse if he is it?) to for the disciples place-prepare one of those many dwellings. After going, Jesus gonna come again to the disciples to receive them into his prepared bodyhouse so that they, his servant-followers, his father-given-ones, can be with him where he is and see his loving glory (12:26; 17:24). And hey, the disciples know where Jesus is going. (Peter has just asked that very question, and Jesus didn't give him a straight answer, 13:36. Nevertheless, Jesus continues to be confident that they do know, 16:5.)

Thomas, then, who was ready to die with Jesus in Jerusalem (11:16), says, "Uh, master, uh, we don't know where you're goin', so we, huh, certainly don't know the way!" Alas and alack, the disciples are not faring well in this farewell discourse. They are still mismisMISunderstanding. Thomas (and later Philip) calls Jesus MASTER, but he has not yet MASTERED the disciples' MISunderstanding!

Jesus says (as he so often does when faced with misunderstanding, 6:35; 8:12; 11:25) IAM AMI IAM. IAM the waytruthlife. True living way. Lively truthful way. Way true and alive! Way-enlightened, shepherded way to pasture (8:12; 10:9, 11). And the way is truly true truth-freeing truth, sanctifying godsworded truth, belonging testified truth (8:32; 17:17; 18:37). And this truthful way is living, lively, alive life. Life-worded, illuminated, eternal, believing, resurrected (raised up out of the tomb) life (1:4-5; 3:15-16; 5:25-28; 6:63, 67; 11:25; 20:31). Through this living truthful way which Jesus the IAM is, people come to the father. (Only, no exceptions! Jesus is the father's only broker.) Knowing Jesus means knowing the father. (Know Jesus, know father; no Jesus no father, and the Judeans certainly don't know either Jesus or his father, 7:28-29; 8:19; 15:21; 16:3.) And knowing the father means seeing him, even though no one has seen the father (1:18; 5:37; 6:46). The disciples do, through the son.

Philip, go-between of Jesus to Nathanael and Greeks (1:45-47; 12:20-22) wants to "come and see" (1:46) and asks Jesus to fathershow them so that they can come and see (the father) and be satisfied (their hearts no longer stirred up). But Jesus been with 'em all this time ALL THIS TIME and still still don't know him (if they did they would know the father). Know Jesus know father; see Jesus see father (12:45). Fathershow? I've been treating you to that show all the time! 'Cuz Jesus in father and father in Jesus (and Jesus in disciples and disciples in Jesus, 10:38; 14:20; 17:21, 23). Jesus' words (and his works) not his own, but they are produced by the father dwelling in his house Jesus (5:19, 30; 8:28). Believing into him, knowing him, means believing that he's in father and father in him, abiding together, loving together in the fathershouse. Don't believe the words; believe the works: waterwining, breadmaking, eyeopening, deadraising. But believe!

Amenamen say: Into-Jesus believers gonna do Jesusworks and even greaterworks (greaterthings you gonna see, 1:50, and greaterworks you gonna do, like the father shows the son greaterworks, 5:20) because Jesus father-goes. (That's where he's going, to be glorified, 13:31. Come from god, go to god, 13:3, 16:28.) Greaterworks gonna get worked because asking in Jesusname (believe into his name, have life in his name, ask in his name, 1:12; 20:31), he (and/or father) gonna do it gonnadoit GONNADOIT (15:7-8, 16; 16:23, 26) so that father in-son might be glorified (and disciples might be completely joy-fulL, 16:24). Glory, glory, glory! Glory in Jesusworks, glory in Jesushour, glory in disciplesworks. Ask Jesus (or father) anything-ANY THING--Jesus (or father) will do it.

Jesuslovers are also Jesuscommandmentskeepers (just as Jesus is fathercommendmentkeeper, 15:10). Jesuscommandment new: love-one-another-as-I-have-loved-you commandment (13:34-35; 15:12, 17). Love Jesus/love one another/abide in Jesuslove, branching off from the true vine and bearing lovely, loving fruit (15:4-8). For his lovers, his commandmentkeepers, Jesus gonna ask (in his own name?) the father to give (or Jesus gonna send on his own, 14:26; 15:26; 16:7) them another (because Jesus is the first) paraclete/advocate/helper/comforter/one-called-alongside. (This is the paraclete, not parakeet, though it does dove-like descend, 1:32. Greek, parakletos, literally, one called alongside, called-alongside as the comforter to dry the beloved believer's tears, and/or called-alongside as the advocate to defend the believed belover's case in a casting-out-of-the-synagogue trial, 16:2). This called-alongside paraclete will be a disciple-forever-with-er. Eternal life, eternal paraclete. With you for-ever-teach/guide/testify/speak/glorify-ing (14:26; 15:26; 16:7, 13). This the spirit of truth (after all, Jesus IAM the truth, 14:6), the truthful spirit, spiritual truth, truly spirited, through whom true worshipers fatherworship (4:23-24). World can't receive this spirit (or this truth, or for that matter the word, 1:11-12) because being from below and not born from above it doesn't see the spirit (or the father in Jesus, 14:9) or know it (or the son or the father, 7:28; 8:19; 16:3). Know Jesus, know father, know paraclete. (Trinity of knowledge?!) But the Jesusloving commandmentkeeping disciples, having been born from above, know it (because they know Jesus and the father) (but do they see paraclete?) cuz it abides/dwells/stays/remains (makes its dwelling-Jesus has prepared that place too) with the disciples, just as it abides etc. with/on/in Jesus (1:32). With you it now dwells, and in you it will be. Paraclete abiding in disciples, Jesus in disciples, disciples in Jesus, Jesus in father (17:21, 23). Through paraclete-dwelling, the disciples will not orphaned be (They're children of god, 1:12; how can they be orphans?!) when Jesus fathergoes and placeprepares, but he will come to them (to take them to himself and to breathe on them holy spirit of peace, 14:3; 20:19, 22, 26). Lil-while world (including temple police, 7:33) no-see Jesus (disciples won't see him either for a lilwhile, and they will suffer laborpains, 16:10, 16, 20-21), but disciples will see Jesus (and rejoice, 16:22), and because he is living (and resurrecting) they will be living (and resurrecting) too. On that day (that Easter hour) the disciples gonna know (and be satisfied, 14:8) that Jesus in father, disciples in Jesus, and Jesus in disciples-all through the paraclete, being perfectly one (17:21, 23). A Jesuscommandmenthaverandkeeper is a Jesuslover (and also a disciplelover, 13:34-35). Also fatherloved/Jesusloved, Jesus revealing himself (exposing himself!) to his lover (reclines at his bosom, 13:23), giving life and breath.

Judas (not the Iscariot, because he has already night-gone-out to Jesus-betray, 13:30) asks the master how he's gonna reveal yourself to them and not to the world. (Oh-oh, another unmastered misunderstanding!) Jesus says again that his lover will be a his-word(s)-keeper/his-commandments-keeper (14:15). Furthermore, Jesusfather will be a Jesuslover-lover (a nice little menage-a-trois), and Jesusandhisfather will come to their lover (blown in by the wind of the spirit, the paraclete) and will make their dwellingplace, their preparedplace (vv. 2-3) with their lover, so that where Jesus the IAM is, his lover also is (v. 4). New home, new family, dwelling/abiding together in love, in the spirit.

Non-Jesuslovers, however, are non-Jesusword(s)-keepers. (They're also presumably non-abiders in the Jesusandfatherhome.) But Jesusword(s) is(are) really fathersendingJesuswords, spoken by the lifted-up son of humanity, the IAM (8:28; cf. also 3:34; 12:49; 15:15; 17:7-8).
 Jesus now speaks these things in the lil-while he's still making his dwellingplace with the disciples (13:33). But the paraclete the holyspirit (spirit-of-truth, 14:17), who will be father-sent-in-Jesus-name (father sent Jesus, father sends paraclete in Jesus' name), will be an allthings-teacher and an allthings-Jesus-said-reminder, helping them to understand the strange things Jesus said and did (2:22; 12:16; 20:9).

One of the all things the paraclete teaches is peace-courageous-amidst-persecution peace (16:33), breathy, resurrected, holy spirited peace (20:21-22). This Jesus-giving peace is different from the Jesus-rejecting-world peace. (Is there any peace with that? The world hates Jesus and his disciples, 15:18-20.) This peace, this believing-in-god-and-Jesus/place-prepared peace pacifies the stirred-up/shrunk-back heart. Jesus reminds the disciples what he's already said to them: he's away-going but to them coming (going to placeprepare and coming to take him to that place, 14:3). If they love him, they would rejoice that he is father-going (but the rejoicing will only really come when the resurrection baby is born, 16:21; 20:20), because the father, with whom he is one (10:30) and in whom he is (14:10), is greater than he. (After all, the father gives him his words and his works!) But he has before-told them these things, so that when they happen (during the hour) they will believe (IAM, 13:19). . . and love and rejoice . . . and remember, through the spirit (16:1, 4). Jesus won't many-things-speak to them, for the worldruler comes. (Indeed, he has already entered into night-going, betraying Judas, 13:27, 30.) But because Jesus is not of this world, this worldruling Satan, the accuser as opposed to the advocating paraclete, doesn't have anything (nor does the Judearuling Pilate, 19:10-11) in him or over him or on him. Hey, in the lifting-up hour, and the worldruler is exorcised, and his world is judged (12:31; 16:11). But Jesus submits himself to the worldruling Satan (and his minions such as Judas and Pilate and the Judeans), so that the Satan-ruled world might know that Jesus fatherloves (and fathergoes and discipleloves). Father commands the good shepherd to lay down his life (and take it up again, 10:18), and Jesus does it (to the end, 13:1). So, Jesus says to the spirit-indwelled disciples, let's do it; let's go forward, from here, from this conquered world (16:33)-to the father!

Exploring Likenesses to the Discourse in African-American Poetry

I am particularly moved by three images in this discourse: house, spirit, and love. First, the house. The father's house. The son taking the believer to that house. The father and son homing in on the believer. House/home. Longing for a place to be family, to have property, to set one's boundaries, to be a person. In African-American poetry we see this theme, as folks yearn for a place to call their own. Nayo Barbara Malcolm Watkins writes about such a feeling in "Black Woman Throws a Tantrum":

I want me a home
Man do you hear me
I want me a home
you understand.
You done stood and let that cracker
take my home
Now I want me a home, nigger
I wants a land that's mine.[2]

I hardly remember my home
been so long
you stood idle
Now you git off ya ass
and make me a home
Make me a land that's mine
            so I can set a spell
            and breathe fresh air
            and ease my mind
            and love-
            and be buried
            in a land that's mine.

The poem is reminiscent of Frances Ellen Watkins Harper's "Bury Me in a Free Land, but Harper's quiet supplication to god is now turned into ranting against an "ass-sitting nigger." Yet after ventilation of her anger at losing her home, her space, her flesh, she fictively resides in that house-yet-to-be-built, where she breathes fresh air (the holy spirit that the risen Jesus breathes on her, John 20:22), eases her mind (and her heart is not stirred up and she experiences unworldly peace, 14:1, 27), lives the resurrected life after the death of homelessness ("I AM resurrection, way, truth, and life," 11:25; 14:6), loves her one-anothers ("This is my commandment," 15:12, which makes a house a home united in love, 14:23), and dies . . . though she continues to live through the land. This house is paradise, Eden, entered only through the garden tomb (19:41).

Such a place is "Where the Heart Is" for Ntozake Shange:

i need me a house like that
a small mansion i could see through
from every angle / with one door only
i could enter / i could let my mind
be that / a small castle i could
lock myself in when the world's
too big ferocious and static fulla
things i just cant understand
but my mind is packed with trunks
of memories closets fulla fears
stairways that lead me to scars
i hate in myself / i need me a
house like that one / a bungalow
by the sea, "where the heart is"
where I can love myself in an empty
space / & maybe fill it with kisses.[3]
There is her house, "where her heart is," her unstirred up heart (John 14:27), and there is "the world," which is "ferocious" and leads to misunderstanding, fear, and self-hatred. ("In me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation," 16:33.) Her needed house, however, which she enters through her one and only door ("I Am the Door/Way," 10:7, 9; 14:6), is a place empty of fears and misunderstanding but filled with self-love. In her house she has peace; in the world she has persecution. But she takes courage, for she has conquered the world--through building her longed-for house in her imagination, where she drinks of the living water.

Similarly, Naomi Long Madgett goes through many "Exits and Entrances."

Through random doors we wandered
     into passages disguised as paradise
     and out again, discarding,
embracing hope anew, discarding again:
exits and entrances to many houses

Without joy we sang,
without grace we danced.
our hump-back rhythms colliding
with our sanity,
our beauty blanching in a hostile sun.

         How should we, could we
         sing our song in a strange land?

Through random doors we have come
home to our kingdom, our own battleground,
not with harps, not with trumpets even,
but armed with the invincible sword and shield
of our own names and faces.[4]

The poet and her folk first "wandered" in many joyless, hopeless, graceless houses. But after quoting Psalm 137:4, they "come home" to their own kingdom ("Unless you are born from above/again, you will never see the kingdom of god," John 3:3), where they take up the armor of their own names and faces. Perhaps they hear the goodshepherd's voice at the door calling them by name and leading them out (10:3).

This house is the home of the paraclete, the spirit, which abides in and with the disciples. George Barlow entitled the third stanza of his epic poem "Gabriel" "Spirit in the Dark." The refrain tells the reader, "Here is the spirit in the dark," and later, to hear, see, touch, feel, and get "the spirit in the dark." This spirit was experienced as one heart, voice, purpose, people, dream and collective beauty, as they sang and played the spirituals, soul, blues and jazz.

Under an old roof that leaks
& an old system
that won't let them breathe
they blow their urgency,
rebirth & survival, sweetly
like wind through reeds & treetops.
The old system (which is not born anew because it is from below) leaves them breathless. Nevertheless, they blow their rebirth--from above, from the wind/spirit (3:5-8), which provides a ReedSea exodus through the deadly tree. In the spirit they experience heart, soul, love, and freedom (untroubled heart and soul, love for one another and truthful freedom). All this through "the spirit in the dark."[5]  The "dark" here has a double meaning, as it does in many poems by African-Americans. It refers both to the skin color of African-Americans and to the "horror of the times" of slavery, segregation, and discrimination. The spirit shines in the midst of the dark through the dark.

Julius E. Thompson says that he sees "In My Mind's Eye" the spirit moving him "Back and forth between / Two worlds" (much as the spirit moves the disciples from the world below to the world above). The spirit also moves him to see "500 million / Walking home free!"[6]  Again, the spirit frees folks (through the truth, John 8:33) and brings them home.

At home the spirit engenders love--love for god and Jesus demonstrated in love for one another. S.I.M.B.A. (Safe In My Brothers Arms), a group of young African-American males at the Sojourners Neighborhood Center in Washington, DC, collectively wrote "Brotherhood":

I love my brothers
for whatever they do.

We help each other
and we're special too...

We all should have peace
in the 'hood.

If everybody would
just do what they should!

We sing with praises
because we're proud.

That's why we
always speak up loud.

We teach our brothers
each and every way.

Because violence happens
every single day.

We are strong
because we are kings

We are the finest
of all human beings

We are the Brothers
of SIMBA yes we are

We fight for our rights
and we are going far![7]

Surely this is the "beloved community" that Jesus envisioned when he commanded his disciples to love one another (John 13:34). Such love results in peace (Jesus-given peace, 14:27). Folks teach one another (under the guidance of the fathersent holyspirit-paraclete, who teaches the disciples everything, 14:26) because the beloved community is subject to violence, hatred, persecution, expulsion, even death (15:18, 20; 16:2). But they are sustained by their pride (encouraged by the conquering of the world, 16:33) and strength of kings (so they have been born from above into the kingdom, 3:3). And they are going far-all the way to a spiritual house where family lives and loves in peace. ("Rise, let's go from here," 14:31.)

Loving, living and loving. Living lovingly. Sterling D. Plumpp writes about such a love-life in "Black ethics":

Not a new thing
but an excavated gem
long lost in centuries
of self-separations.

Will make man strong,
ready to die for his
oman/ child/ and country/
which is obscured in doubt.

the priceless dynamo
Called human love that
makes a man, a man,
and moves him to self-pride.[8]

No greater love than this: laying down one's life, dying . . . for others, for the sheep (John 15:12: 10:11, 15). The love-life is love-death. Yet it is the "excavated gem," the "priceless dynamo" that fulfills one's humanity and moves one from self-separation (stirred-up heart) to self-pride (peace).

Exploring Likenesses to the Discourse in My Own Soul

Yes, I too want a house, a house wherein dwells the spirit of love. In my house growing up there was no such spirit, or I should say that I did not find the spirit of love blowing there envigorating me but a breath of control stifling and constricting. It was my father's house, where he ruled. He was the unquestioned boss, but we all observed that more than he exerted it. My father's house became dominated by my father's body. He became diabetic, and my mother observed a very strict diet, in which everything was weighed and every meal was served exactly at the appointed hour. If we could control the diet, then perhaps we could control the disease. But we couldn't. The disease went out of control, and so did our house. My father, like Jesus, went away, but unlike Jesus, he did not come again nor send a paraclete.

I long to dwell in a loving house, where there is peace, where my anxiety is quelled. I find that house in reading the gospel, writing about it, teaching it. There a house is constructed for me where Jesus, the father, and the paraclete come to live with me. They love me and breathe into me the breath of life. Yet I am not perfectly at peace in this house. "I am the way . . . no one to the father but through me"?!? Of course, no one comes to the christian god except through the christ. Makes sense. But that's not the way it's usually interpreted. Usually: no authentic religion apart from Christianity. None. Not Buddhism, not Hinduism, not Islam, not "secular humanism," and certainly not Judaism, for the "Jews" rejected Jesus, according to the gospel. Only Christ, that is, Christianity, that is, the church, that is, the institutional church, has THE TRUTH, and everyone else has at best a pale reflection of the truth. (Okay, now time to get on my soapbox, be prosaic.) This kind of rhetoric simply legitimates the authority of the institution and those who hold power in it. Such talk strengthens the boundaries between the church and the world and the connections with the church. Yet it also sets up an "us vs. them" mentality. We have the truth, but you do not. Such rhetoric may draw church members together but it also alienates them from others, leading perhaps to oppression and violence. (Okay. Down off soapbox now. Go over to the parkbench and resume doodling.)

The father's house-yes, yes, that's what we're talking about--is also a patriarchal house. (Oh, oh, am I stepping back up on the box again? When I say those big words-"rhetoric," "patriarchal"-I feel my body stiffen and rise to the platform. A kind of resurrection? If so, let's go forward, 14:31!) In the father's house the father and son dwell there with believers in the spirit, but what about the mother and the daughter? Is this house built on sexist foundations and therefore cannot stand?

The father. I am the father now, with a wife and two daughters. I pray that my house-our house (8442 57th Avenue, Berwyn Heights, MD, you can't miss it: it has the Japanese maple out front)-is spirited by love. Love that recognizes all people-male or female, parent or child-as worthy and gifted. Love that does not exclude but includes. Love that empowers and strengthens. Love, love, love. Love, peace, joy.


[1]  It is difficult to know where the Farewell Discourse formally begins. Most see it beginning at 13:31. Cf. Fernando F. Segovia, The Farewell of the Word: The Johannine Call to Abide (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1991), 64. Francis J. Moloney, however, takes 13:1-38 as a "coherent, self-contained narrative" and notes that there is "a new development in the narrative strategy of the author in 14:1" (The Gospel of John, Sacra Pagina 4, A Michael Glazier Book, Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 1998) 371, 391). Cf. also Johannes Beutler, Habt keine Angst: Die rest Johanneische Abschiedsrede (Joh 14), SBS 16 (Stuttgart: Katholisches Bibelwerk, 1984) 9-19. I therefore begin the discourse proper at 14:1. Verses 31-38 function as "hinge verses" between the narrative of 13:1-30 and the discourse of 14:1-31.
[2]  Nayo Barbara Malcolm Watkins, "Black Woman Throws a Tantrum," Trouble the Water: 250 Years of African-American Poetry, ed. Jerry W. Ward, Jr. (New York: Mentor, 1997) 369. PP
[3]  Ntozake Shange, "Where the Heart Is," in The Garden Thrives: Twentieth-Century African-American Poetry, ed. Clarence Major (New York: HarperPerennial, 1996) 318-19.
[4] Naomi Long Madgett, "Exits and Entrances," Ward, Trouble the Water, 184-5.
[5]  George Barlow, "Gabriel," Ward, Trouble the Water, 455-56.
[6]  Julius E. Thompson, "In My Mind's Eye," Ward, Trouble the Water, 496.
[7]  S.I.M.B.A., "Brotherhood," The Voices of Children: Stories From Our Future, ed. Geoff Zylstra and Reba Mathern (Sojourners Neighborhood Center, 1996) 27.
[8]  Sterling D. Plumpp, "Black ethics," Ward, Trouble the Water, 374.

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Copyright 2000, by Michael Newheart.  All rights reserved.  This is a draft version of a work still in progress; please do not copy or cite anything from this paper without explicit permission of the author.

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