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Archive for December 27th, 2012

Translation: “The Word became flesh”

Collect of the Day:  

Merciful Lord, cast the bright beams of Your light upon Your Church that we, being instructed in the doctrine of Your blessed apostel and evangelist John, may come to the light of everlasting life;  for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, oneGod,now and forever. Amen.

Lessons:

Revelation 1: 1-6

Psalm 11

1 John 1: 1-2: 2

St. John 21: 20-25

St. John was a son of Zebedee and brother of James the Elder (whose festival day is July 25). John was among the first disciples to be called by Jesus (Matthew 4:18 -22) and became known as “the disciple whom Jesus loved,” as he refers to himself in the Gospel that bears his name (e.g., John 21:20). Of the Twelve, John alone did not forsake Jesus in the hours of His suffering and death. With the faithful women, he stood at the cross, where our Lord made him the guardian of His mother. After Pentecost, John spent his ministry in Jerusalem and at Ephesus, where tradition says he was bishop. He wrote the fourth Gospel, the three Epistles that bear his name, and the Book of Revelation. Especially memorable in his Gospel are the account of the wedding at Cana (John 2:1-12), the “Gospel in a nutshell” (John 3:16), Jesus’ saying about the Good Shepherd (John 10:11-16), the raising of Lazarus from the dead (John 11), and Jesus’ encounter with Mary Magdalene on Easter morning (John 20:11-18). According to tradition, John was banished to the island of Patmos (off the coast of Asia Minor) by the Roman emperor Domitian. John lived to a very old age, surviving all the apostles, and died at Ephesus around AD 100. (From The Treasury of Daily Prayer, Concordia Publishing House)

St. John 1

 1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.2He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

 6There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light.

 9 The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12But to all who did receive him,who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

 14And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Reflection:  My wife, a chemist and scientist, once pointed out to me that physically you can bring light into the darkness, but you can not physically bring darkness into  the light.  I can cup my hands like making a snowball  so that the interior is darkness and I open my hands and the dark dissipates.  But we can spiritually bring darkness into the light.  In fact, by nature, separated by sin from the Lord, we are darkness (Ephesians 5:8). Into the darkness the light shines, Jesus Christ.  This is the great theme of Apostle and Evangelist remembered this day in the Scripture the Lord breathed into him to write.  The Gospel above is the appointed Gospel reading for the last service of Christ Mass Day. It is the light of love’s pure light, Jesus Christ, the dark world needs and yet knows not Him.  This is the light of His Word made flesh that His Church is to shine in the world.

Lord Jesus Christ, we implore You to hear our prayers  and enlighten the darkness of our hearts by Your gracious visitation;  for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. 

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