Reading: 1 John 2:7–14
Through our Baptism we have been adopted into the family of God. We became beloved little children for His name’s sake. God’s commandment to “love your neighbor as yourself” was old because it had been around since the beginning (Leviticus 19:18). In Christ, it was made new when He said, “Love one another as I have loved you” (John 15:12). He showed us His love by His bloody sacrifice on the cross, and His true light shown through the darkness when he was raised from the dead. This new commandment is rooted in Christ’s love, and only through His atoning sacrifice are we able to love our brother and abide in the light.
We start out in this Christian faith as little children, knowing the Father through the water and Word of Christ. We become young men and women with time and perseverance in the faith, through the strengthening of our faith in His Word and Sacrament, which has the power to overcome the evil one. The eternal Word, which was from the beginning, has called us out of darkness into the light, and we become fathers and mothers when we have matured in the faith and start to teach it to others.
Heavenly Father, You have called us out of darkness and into the light through the death and resurrection of Your dear Son, Jesus Christ. Strengthen us in the one true faith which you began in our Baptism and sustain through your Holy Word and Sacrament, that we may abide in the light; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
God has called you out of darkness
Into His most marv’lous light;
Brought His truth to life within you,
Turned your blindness into sight.
Let your light so shine around you
That God’s name is glorified
And all find fresh hope and purpose
In Christ Jesus crucified. (LSB 646:2)
Bryan Payne (Sem I, CTSFW)