Friday, December 5, 2014

The True Light

John 1:6  There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7  He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. 8  He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. 9  The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.
...........Joh 1:19  This is the testimony given by John when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, "Who are you?" 20  He confessed and did not deny it, but confessed, "I am not the Messiah." 21  And they asked him, "What then? Are you Elijah?" He said, "I am not." "Are you the prophet?" He answered, "No." 22  Then they said to him, "Who are you? Let us have an answer for those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?" 23  He said, "I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, 'Make straight the way of the Lord,'" as the prophet Isaiah said. 24  Now they had been sent from the Pharisees. 25  They asked him, "Why then are you baptizing if you are neither the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the prophet?" 26  John answered them, "I baptize with water. Among you stands one whom you do not know, 27  the one who is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandal."

John comes as a witness to the imminent arrival of the Light-Bearer. John is clear that he is not “The One”. Instead his task is to be "...the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, 'Make straight the way of the Lord.'" For this to happen, the community needs to repent of their wayward lives and return to the God of their ancestors. John treats them as if they have no faith and requires them to be baptised – something normally reserved for those who convert to the Jewish faith.

We who await the Christmas arrival of the Saviour could do well to hear the invitation of John: Turn away from the faithless practices of our secular celebrations and discover the deep spirituality of this season. Or as John might say – ‘why be content with fake Christmas lights when we can get to know the One who brings the real Light of Christ-mass?’

For Thought
 Light of the world
You stepped down into darkness.
Opened my eyes, let me see.
Beauty that made this heart adore You
Hope of a life spent with You..........
Lyrics by Chris Tomlin

First Sunday in Advent
2. Preparing the Way
The Scripture passage for the day is drawn from Reuben Job and Norman Shawchuck, A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and other Servants, (Nashville, The Upper Room 1983), 20.
This reflection is from my own devotional exercises for the day.

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