Judgement and the Children of Light

A reading for Thursday, September 18, 2014: John 12:27-36.

Jesus said, "Now my soul is troubled." We don't imagine that Jesus ever was troubled, do we? Of course we know that he was, but that's not the first place our image of Jesus takes us. What is troubling Jesus?

Judgement. The reality of judgement was always troubling for the people of God. In the ancient world it was the scariest of nightmares, the day when God would descend and judge the world. The Old Testament described the day of judgement as a day of darkness and suffering. Of course Jesus was troubled at the coming of judgement.

And yet in the midst of such trouble Jesus proclaims that God is still to be glorified. The heavens too bring glory to God in the thunder and from the angels. God can use even judgement for glory. Even as the world is being purified, Jesus will bring glory to God's name and even more will deliver the people who believe away from the darkness of judgement and into the light of God's love and grace. It's good news for us!

Truth is judgement doesn't scare us as much anymore. We have gotten used to a God who we know as love and grace. Jesus promised he would never abandon us until the end of the age. We walk as children of light. Yet, perhaps we ought not forget that Jesus paid the price of judgement so that we might live as those children of light. Jesus was troubled so that we don't have to be.

We are grateful to God for light in the midst of darkness, love in the midst of trouble, and glory in the midst of judgement. Thank you Jesus.


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