by Vineeth John Abraham
"I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of life." John 8:12
The earth was waste and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. (Gen 1:3). This is the first place we read about Light in Holy Bible.
In the days of Creation, God found that it was good. And God created man in his own image ("in the image of God created he him") and named him Adam. But serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made. Serpent convinced the woman Eve to sin. Adam and Eve committed the first sin. Their eyes opened. They fled from light, hid themselves from the presence of Jehovah God amongst the trees of the garden.
Mankind started running away from God that day. We all suffer from different sort of tensions and stress. We have darkness in our hearts and mind. The light which was passed is taken away completely.
Baptism is the first sacrament for every Syrian Christian. Through Baptism, we are welcomed to our church. In the prayers of Baptism there is a portion where the priest delivers the oath. It says to Satan/ Devil “Don’t come near my son of Christ, Go to darkness, the place where no one lives”. Even though we hear / listen that, we don’t understand that darkness is the place where Satan should live, not us. We run to darkness along with him.
Job: 24:13. “These are of them that rebel against the light; They know not the ways thereof, Nor abide in the paths thereof.” We do the same.
In our Holy Fifty lent prayers we pray “Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? Or whither shall I flee from thy presence?” Still we think we can run from him!
Light from Sun is same. But same light that makes plants grow, hardens clay. The response is completely different. Likewise, blessings are.
Jesus tells, “I have come as a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me may not abide in the darkness.” John 12:46. We are called Christians. Meaning, we follow Christ. If we believe food is good to take away our hunger, our hunger won't go. You should have food, then only your hunger will go away. Likewise you should follow him in all ways. Try to see good things with the eyes which he has given. Hear good things. And do good things for his glory.
World is becoming dirty and filthy day by day. We live in the same world. We are going to celebrate HH Ignatius Elias Third, The Patriarch, Birthday tomorrow (Oct 13th). I remember one story told by HH. HH was coming down to India in a ship. Along with other crew members, HH was sitting on the deck watching the ocean. He called his nephew who was the captain of the boat. Asked him how the ship is moving? He answered because of water. HH asked him to put a hole in the ship so that the water come inside.
Everyone was puzzled, but later came to know it was a great lesson. HH was telling them about the filthy world. We are living in this dirty world, but we should not allow all dirty things to come inside to make us impure.
When we are getting tempted, let St. Ephrem’s word give us strength. “I was hunger, but then I remembered about the glory and happiness which you give for the people who starve, praise you without fail and stayed away from my food.” Let us also keep this in mind. May the prayers of St. George and HH Elias give you more strength.
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