As long as you have the light, believe in the light so that you might become people whose lives are determined by the light.” After Jesus said these things, he went away and hid from them.
Common English Bible
Jesus had done many miraculous signs before the people, but they didn’t believe in him. This was to fulfill the word of the prophet Isaiah:
Lord, who has believed through our message?
To whom is the arm of the Lord fully revealed?
Isaiah explains why they couldn’t believe:
He made their eyes blind
and closed their minds
so that they might not see with their eyes,
understand with their minds,
and turn their lives around—
and I would heal them.
Isaiah said these things because he saw Jesus’ glory; he spoke about Jesus. Even so, many leaders believed in him, but they wouldn’t acknowledge their faith because they feared that the Pharisees would expel them from the synagogue. They believed, but they loved human praise more than God’s glory.
Just as Jesus is inviting people to walk, to trust and believe in the light, and to become children of the light, there were some who just could get themselves there…it’s like they preferred to live in a void. As they hear these radical and thought-provoking words…and see Jesus ministering to those who are not like him or them, they are astonished. Who could blame them? His message went against everything they had been taught from childhood. His actions backed it all up.
For the people to believe, they had to be willing and capable of letting go of everything they thought they knew…everything they’d been taught was being torn apart by this teacher of a new way. Even though Jesus' message made sense, promoted justice and peace, and sought to strengthen people's relationship with God, others, and self, his methods were so foreign, many just could not go there with him. The things we carry with us from childhood are so ingrained in us, we cannot even see them much less change them. How can we change that which we cannot recognize?
Loving God…This Lenten season and beyond…may my thoughts be pure. May my actions lead with love. May my heart follow you. May I invite others to experience life in you through my words, ideas and actions. May I be inspired in ways to grow my heart nearer to yours. Mold me and make me for you are the potter, may I be the clay?
Pastor Michael Williams