In today’s Gospel reading from John 21, we read about Jesus’ third appearance to the disciples after the resurrection. It’s really an interesting story. The disciples had been out fishing all night. They had no luck at all. At dawn, they saw Jesus standing on the shore, but they did not realize it was Him. So He tells them, “Cast the net over the right side of the boat and you will find something.” I can just hear Peter, a professional fisherman, thinking, “Oh, we’ve been fishing on the wrong side of the boat!” They do as Jesus said and haul in more fish than they could handle.
In the first reading from Acts 4, we hear about the name of Jesus. After curing the crippled man, Peter and John are arrested. Hauled before the high priests, they are asked, “By what power or by what name have you done this?” Peter rocks them with his answer. “It was in the name of Jesus Christ…There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved.”
Jesus. The Name above all names. There is no other name by which men are to be saved. Not Mohammed. Not Buddha. Not Confucius. Not anyone. No one else can get you into heaven. This may sound pretentious or disrespectful to other religions. But as Christians, it is what we believe. Jesus said it. The Apostles affirmed it. The Church continues to teach it. The name of Jesus should be rolling around in our heads and off our tongues all the time!
Father, we profess the mighty name of Jesus! We thank you for the gift of salvation and healing through just one name…Jesus! Amen.