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7 “If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.”

Jesus answered Thomas’ question in verse 5 that in the face of the apostles despair of His leaving them, they can know the Father as real to them. He was not remote from the difficulties they would shortly face by Jesus’ departure.

7 “If you [plural] had known Me,

Thomas earlier said, “How can we know the way.” Here Jesus “you had known Me.” The “you” here is plural so Jesus does not merely speak to Thomas but to all eleven apostles. It appears that the disciples did not know Jesus or the Father fully enough.

you would have known My Father also;

Knowing Jesus is to know the Father. Knowledge of the Father and of Jesus are mutually interdependent. To know the Son is to know the Father and vice versa.

and from now on you know Him [the Father]

After the apostles come to grips with who Jesus is and His mission (the way, the truth and the life), they will know what the Father is about. This is a promise. The apostles will draw on resources from the Father after Jesus returns to glory.

and have seen Him.”

Jesus equates His presence to the Father’s. To perceive who Jesus is, is to perceive who God is. Now only will the apostles see the Father as a future prospect, but they can see Him as a present reality.


It is not our seeing but perceiving that is important in Jesus’ economy


There are times in the Christian life we are dull of hearing. Truth seems dull and dim to us. It has come to a level of lodgment in our minds and it does not grasp us fully. We can reach a state where there is a lowness in grasping what God wants us to know. Knowing God is a high goal of Christian living. This is what theologians call the beatific vision.

If perceiving is true seeing, we can know God. Faith demands an object. We cannot believe without facts to trust. Faith in itself has no value without something to believe in.

There is a direct interconnection between the Father and Christ. The relationship of the Father and Christ is repeated from the beginning of the gospel of John (Jn 1:1) and continued throughout the gospel (Jn 5:18; 10:30; 20:28). The more we perceive the Son the greater our grasp of the beatific vision of the Father.