For February’s sermons, I’m planning to focus on a portion of the Sermon on the Mount from the Gospel of Matthew (chapter 5). There is an undercurrent theme of light shining in the darkness that begins Matthew’s story. The Magi are led by a light (star) on their journey to Bethlehem, where they discover the Christ. After John is arrested, Matthew quotes the prophet Isaiah, “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness - on them light has shined.” We discover that Jesus is this light.
Jesus proclaims, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” Turn from darkness to the light. The light shining has an immediate impact on the lives of people. Four disciples drop what they are doing and respond. Good news is proclaimed. People are cured of disease and sickness. Great crowds gather and follow Him. Jesus ascends a mountain. God’s light is revealed in His sermon. At the end of His transforming message, the people are astounded at His teaching. It is something very different from what they have heard from their religious leaders.
Join me in reading the sermon and reflecting on the transforming presence of God’s light. Matthew’s message is for all of us. As we build our lives on Jesus’ teaching, the kingdom of heaven is revealed not only to us, but to all around us.
Grace and peace to you,