Friday, 19 September 2014

"THEREFORE BE CAREFUL LEST ..." Bible Readings Thoughts for Sept. 19th

“THEREFORE BE CAREFUL LEST …”

            Our chapter (11) in Luke’s gospel today is full of challenging sayings by our Lord. There is great spiritual value in deeply meditating on them and seeing the extent to which they have application to the circumstances in which we live today.  The background to many of them is the self-righteous attitudes of the religious leaders who contended with Jesus.
            Praise of Jesus’ mother developed in early centuries and led to the cult of a sort of Mary worship. Luke records a little incident which those influenced by such attitudes must gloss over and ignore.  We read the response of Jesus to a woman in the crowd who calls out, “Blessed is the womb that bore you and the breasts at which you nursed”  Jesus responds, “Blessed rather are those who hear the words of God and keep it.” [v.27,28]  May we all be blessed for that reason, and recognise our additional blessing in being able to read all the words of God..
            The way that we “keep it” will result in us being “full of light”!   As a result our “eye is healthy” [v.34] and so our eye (or ear) keep bringing ‘healthy food’ into our minds.  This is more and more essential today as our world is so full of junk food!
            Underline the next 2 verses, “Therefore be careful lest the light (you think you have) be darkness”  [v. 35] Let’s fully absorb the point Jesus makes in the next verse, “If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, it will be wholly bright, as when a lamp with its rays gives you light.” Are you and I “full of light”?   How difficult it is to maintain such light in the increasing darkness of this world – evil words and deeds multiply all around us.  Now the words of David in Psalm 139 are a special inspiration to us with his perception of the light of God in the darkness.
            “If I say,’ writes David, ‘Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night, even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light to you.” [v12] Read the rest of that Psalm, especially the last 2 verses – and then you and I will be even more dedicated to “be careful lest” the light of God’s word be smothered by the darkness that increasingly surrounds us.