The Light of Jesus

John 12: 44-50
Acts 12: 24-13:5a / Psa 67

I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.
(John 12:46)

The light of Truth is God’s gift to man,
The Word made flesh, His beloved Son;
Believe His words are the Father’s plan,
As the Father and Jesus are One.

Then Jesus cried out, “When a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the One Who sent me. When he looks at me, he sees the one who sent me. I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness. As for the person who hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save it. There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day. For I did not speak of my own accord, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and how to say it. I know that His command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.” (John 12:44-50)

Reflection

Like light and darkness, there is no middle ground, no compromise, no gray areas where our faith in Jesus Christ in concerned. Either we believe in the claims of Jesus as the Son of God and Light of the world, or reject Him and “stay in the darkness” of our sins. Jesus does not mince words when He says in today’s Gospel reading that it is His Word that will save or condemn us on the last day. His Word comes from the Father, and it is His Word that will lead us back to the Father. It was the failure of the Jewish authorities to believe His words that separated them from His flock.

Jesus’ words in Jn.12:48-49 highlight an important culture and belief that we follow in our Brotherhood (BCBP) — that the good that we do we never do on our own, but always with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and according to God’s will. Only the evil that we do is our own. This is what disobedience is all about. As faithful members of the Church, we must always follow the guidelines laid down by those who are in authority over us. We believe that their authority emanates from the grace of the Holy Spirit. We also believe that God’s blessings easily flow down to those who are willing to submit to authority.

We do not regard submission to authority as a yoke that we are compelled to bear, but as a discipline that we humbly and willingly accept in full trust that it is essential in our search for enlightenment. It is a firm hand that leads us to the light of Christ from the darkness of ignorance and depravity. The intransigent, the proud, and the hard-hearted who choose to remain in the shadows of sin will be condemned by their own disobedience and rejection of God’s Word on the Day of Judgment.

O Holy Spirit, we pray: let Your light shine upon us to dispel the darkness of doubts and despair. Lead us from pride and disobedience, into submission to the Father’s will. Amen.

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