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From March 27, 2015

A Reflection
  by Pastor Cliff

Hi Friends:

Jesus heals man born blind In Johnís Gospel, when Jesus encounters a man born blind, the disciples ask, Who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answers the question by teaching the disciples that neither the man nor his parents had sinned, but the blindness happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. Jesus then spit on the ground, made some mud with his saliva, and put it on the manís eyes. He instructed the man to go wash in the Pool of Siloam, and when the man did, he went away seeing.

At the very end of this story, Jesus says: For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.

So the drama ends by pronouncing that Christís presence in the world is a judgment. Those who cannot see now have light and can see. Those who say they already see and have no need for light are blinded by the light. The wonderful professor of preaching at Candler School of Theology, Fred B. Craddock, commented on this verse, writing: The reader is not allowed simply to enjoy a wonderful story about Jesus who gives sight to the blind. Christís coming creates a crisis and two kinds of results follow: light comes to those who acknowledge life is darkness without him; darkness comes to those who without him claim to see.

From the earliest days of the church, Lent has been the season of preparation for baptism on the eve of Easter. At the Great Vigil, those who had fasted and prayed and had been instructed in the faith were stripped of all their clothing Ė not even a hairpin could go into the baptistry Ė and plunged into water, just before dawn on Easter Day. In some of the early documents, the newly baptized are called the illumined, those who have seen the light.

Perhaps the question for us to ask this year at the close of Lent is: What does it mean to have our eyes opened, to be the children of the light?

Blessings,

Cliff Houston
Interim Pastor, FBCR

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