5.And now I go to him who sent me. By a very excellent consolation he assuages the grief which they might feel on account of his departure, and this was highly necessary. They who had hitherto been allowed to remain at their ease, were called to severe and arduous battles for the future. What then, would have become of them, if they had not known that Christ was in heaven, as the guardian of their salvation? For to go to the Father is nothing else than to be received into the heavenly glory, in order to possess the highest authority. This is held out to them, therefore, as a solace and remedy of grief, that, though Christ be absent from them in body, yet he will sit at the right hand of the Father, to protect believers by his power.
Here Christ reproves the apostles for two faults; first, that they were too much attached to the visible presence of his flesh; and, secondly, that, when this had been taken away, they were seized with grief, and did not lift their eyes to a higher region. The same thing happens to us; for we always hold Christ bound by our senses, and then, if he do not appear to us according: to our desire, we contrive for ourselves a ground of despair.
And none of you asketh me, whither goest thou? It may appear to be an unfounded charge against the apostles, that they did not ask whether their Master was going; for they had formerly inquired at him on this subject with great earnestness. But the answer is easy. When they inquired, they did not raise their minds to confidence, and this was the chief duty which they were bound to perform. The meaning therefore is, as soon as you hear of my departure, you become alarmed, and do not consider whither I am going, or for what purpose I go away.”