Christ, our Light

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

I came into the world as light, so that everyone who believes in me might not remain in darkness.
(John 12:46)

We believe this is what God has willed:
The darkness of sin will disappear;
By His light all things will be revealed,
In His love there is nothing to fear.

Then Jesus cried out, “Whoever believes in me does not believe in me only, but in the One who sent me. The one who looks at me is seeing the One who sent me. I came into the world as light, so that everyone who believes in me might not remain in darkness. If anyone hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge that person. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day. For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. 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

At the start of his Gospel, St. John, the favorite apostle wrote, “What came to be through Him was life, and this life was the light of the human race; the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (Jn.1:4-5). We also recall the first verses in the first book of the Bible, Genesis, where it says, “In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless wasteland, and darkness covered the abyss… then God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light” (Gen.1:1-3). We believe our Lord Jesus was the reason for that light.

Everything has life because of light. Plants and animals, and even man cannot exist without it. Jesus is the light of the world. Without Him, the whole world would still be in the darkness of sin. When we choose to hide in the shadows of sin, we cannot stand the brightness of God’s light. We are blinded, as Saul was blinded by the light of Jesus on his way to Damascus because he was in the state of sin by persecuting the early Christians. As Jesus told Nicodemus, the Pharisee who came to Him in the darkness of night, “Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.” (Jn.3:19-21)

It is our faith in Jesus, our Redeemer that draws us to the light of God’s love and keeps us away from the shadows of sin. He said it plainly enough: “Whoever believes in (me) is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.” (Jn.3:18)

Jesus desires that we follow His shining example. He said, “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Mat.5:14-16) Our Lord calls us “the children of light”, because we bear the hope that one day, when the moment comes to leave this world as the flame of life is snuffed out, we will look up and see the Eternal Light beckoning us to His heavenly kingdom.

Father God, even though this world is a “valley of darkness” we are not afraid, as long as we heed the words of Your Beloved Son to “walk in the light”, and be a beacon to others too so that we all may find our way to You. Amen.

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