Faith Daily | 28 April 2021
PRAYER of the DAY - EASTER FOUR APBA p510
whose Son Jesus is the good shepherd of your people:
help us when hear his voice
to know him who calls us each by name,
and to follow where he leads;
who with you and the Holy Spirit
lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever.
GOSPEL for the Day: John 12: 44-50
44 Then Jesus cried aloud: ‘Whoever believes in me believes not in me but in him who sent me. 45And whoever sees me sees him who sent me. 46I have come as light into the world, so that everyone who believes in me should not remain in the darkness. 47I do not judge anyone who hears my words and does not keep them, for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. 48The one who rejects me and does not receive my word has a judge; on the last day the word that I have spoken will serve as judge, 49for I have not spoken on my own, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment about what to say and what to speak. 50And I know that his commandment is eternal life. What I speak, therefore, I speak just as the Father has told me.’
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by Neville Eckersley
The whole of chapter 12 has been conversation about the Son of Man, the Messiah, between Jesus and his own Jewish people in Jerusalem. In our section Jesus is making his final speech before his arrest and trial.
His theme here is of himself as the light of the world. He is the light “that enlightens everyone” (John 1: 9) and is inviting belief in himself and his message. Jesus says this is a serious matter because what he says and does is not just his own message but that of the Father who sent him to embody it and bring it as light to the whole of humanity, (verse 44).
Those who do “see the light” in this sense, and believe it, “become children of light.” (verse 36). Those hearing the message but not believing it are to be condemned by the words of the message itself (verse 48) rather than by Jesus (verse47).
A question naturally arises here for us as readers of this passage and hearers of Jesus’ words:
If Jesus is not merely a teacher of religious ethics, a wise and good man encouraging goodness and wisdom, but is who he claimed to be - the light of the world, the one sent from the unique God of the Universe to bring us all back to Himself, then …. What is our reaction to Jesus’ message and how seriously do we take it? ( Matthew 6:33).
FINAL PRAYER: “Resurrection” Tom Gordon
To rise from despair
when despair has had its victory,
is a thing of wonder and of joy.
To rise from the gates of hell,
when death has lost its sting,
is a resurrection beyond imagining.
To rise from the chains of fear,
when freedom is the gift we hold,
is the new beginning we dared not expect.
To rise from hopelessness,
when ‘all things new’ are being revealed,
is our promise now fulfilled.
To rise from a darkened tomb,
when we believed our Light had gone,
is our glory, conquering all.