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Tag Archives: light

Cleansed by the Blood of Jesus

5This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. 6If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true; 7but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:5-10, NRSV)

I think we all know that we are sinners. We have all fallen short of the life God intended for us to live.

But sometimes we get caught up in ourselves and we think we know better than God and it is in those moments this text comes into light.

Sometimes we do things for our own self interest and claim they are of God. We work systems so they come out the way we want them rather than following after God’s plan and ways.

Sometimes even as followers we shut off the light rather than spread it.

How can we make sure we are always showing light and not darkness?

 

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The True Light Comes Into the World

6There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. 8He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. 9The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. 12But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God. (John 1:6-13, NRSV)

John was Jesus’ cousin and a herald for Jesus. John told everyone about Jesus and what he was going to do.

John was not the light of the world and he did not claim to be because he knew Jesus was.

It is not our job to be the light or the savior. It is our job to tell the world like John did. Share what God has done for you and God’s love with the world.

 

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In the Beginning was the Word

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. (John 1:1-5, NRSV)

Have you ever been in a dark place and then a light came in?

The darkness is dispersed and light takes over.

That is how Jesus is in our lives. Even when our flesh comes in and sin takes over Jesus pushes it all away.

His life over comes all of our sin and makes us clean.

And remember he loves you and wants you to have the life God has prepared for you.

 

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The Lord is my Light and Salvation

1The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
2When evildoers assail me to devour my flesh— my adversaries and foes— they shall stumble and fall.
3Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war rise up against me, yet I will be confident.
4One thing I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.
5For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will set me high on a rock.
6Now my head is lifted up above my enemies all around me, and I will offer in his tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; I will sing and make melody to the Lord.
(Psalm 27:1-6, NRSV)

No matter what happens in my life I will not fear. Because I know my God will always hide me in the shelter God has prepared for me.

God will conceal me in His tent and keep me from my enemies.

I will not fear for God is always with me and nothing can change that!

No matter what may come, I will rest in my God and I will not fear!

 

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Sin Dwells in Me

13Did what is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, working death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. 14For we know that the law is spiritual; but I am of the flesh, sold into slavery under sin. 15I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. 17But in fact it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it.19For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. 20Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me.  (Romans 7:13-20, NRSV)

I do not understand my own actions, I do the things I don’t want to do and I don’t do the things I know I should do.

I don’t do the wrong I do, but it is the sin that dwells in me. My flesh is weak and though I have been washed by the waters of baptism and the Holy Spirit dwells in me sin still is in me. It dwells in my body until the day of physical death.

I fight to do what is right but my flesh has the way of sin.

We must cling to Christ and follow after what is right.

 

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When Did We See You?

31“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. 34Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ 37Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? 39And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ 40And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’ 41Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; 42for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ 44Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’45Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:31-46, NRSV)

Have you ever seen Jesus?

Looked into the face of another and witnessed the Lord?

Maybe it was someone who helped you. Maybe it was someone you helped.

The part about this text that really sticks with me is not that some people helped those in need and some didn’t help. It’s not that some thought they were doing the right thing and others were just self-centered. The thing that really sticks with me from this text is that everyone is surprised. No one knows when they saw Jesus or did some or didn’t do something for him. To me this says we can’t really be on the lookout for Jesus to help the right person, we have to realize that Jesus is every person and everything we do or don’t do for others is doing or not doing that for Jesus.

So how can we better live out the love that Jesus has given us by being a force for his love in the world?

 

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Sermon on the Mount

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. 2Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying: 3“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.4“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7“Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. 8“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 9“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 10“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11“Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you. 13“You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot. 14“You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. 15No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house.16In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven. 17“Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets; I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. 18For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one letter, not one stroke of a letter, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. 19Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, will be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:1-20, NRSV)

Nothing from the Law and the Prophets will pass away until the law is accomplished. So whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. We are to be light for the darkness to give way to Christ’s love and salt to give seasoning to the world. And how do we do that?

We need to uphold all of the scriptures because that is what Jesus came to fulfill. And we do that by keeping the commandments…

And how many of us can keep the commandments?

Well none of us can.

But we blessed when we are poor in spirit, when we mourn, when we are meek, and when we hunger and thirst for righteousness.

We should be filled with mercy and peacemakers and to stand up for our faith.

But we can’t do these things to earn heaven. We do them because Christ is living inside of us. We are living as Christ would live to help others see how they might live.

That is what we are called to do, to emulate Christ and allow His life to shine through ours so that others may see in darkness and be seasoned with mercy.

 

 

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