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OPINION

Pastoral Commentary: From darkness to light, Jesus is the way

Rev. Michael Schotte
Pratt Tribune
Rev. Michael Schotte, St. Paul Lutheran Church, Preston, Kansas

We live among so much confusion. A confused world. Confused values. A confused nation, culture, and way of life. Marriages and families are in conflict. Relationships and marriages have little or no regard for how God intended them to be. We are even saying now that marriage can be something other than one man and one woman in a lifelong bond of love and commitment. It’s confusion as if walking in darkness.

Children are valued only if they are convenient and not “accidental” or “unplanned.” Children who are not wanted can easily be done away with even before they are born, in spite of the fact that Jesus said, “Let the children come to Me” (Mark 10:14). He meant children of all ages. Confusion and darkness are everywhere.

There are addictions and dependencies upon anything and anyone, except the living and true God Who, through Jesus His Son, gives freedom from all that the evil one would use to enslave us. You’ve seen the darkness. We’ve all been in it in one way or another. That’s what our sin brings to us . . . darkness, confusion, death. It’s no wonder that Jesus looked at the crowds who gathered around Him and said “they were like sheep without a shepherd.” “He had compassion on them” (Mark 6:34).

Jesus has compassion on us. He cares for us. In the Gospel of Mark, we read of the Son of God going “out to a desolate place, and there He prayed” (Mark 1:35). What words did Jesus use? We don’t know. But we do know what His will is. He came to save sinners. Surely Jesus prayed for people then and for us now. That the Father’s will is done. That we would have our daily needs met by the heavenly Father. That we would have peace in the forgiveness of our sin and would gladly forgive those who sin against us. That we would resist temptation and turn and flee from evil.

Jesus was always taking upon Himself the task of serving people whose lives were sick with sin. He even said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners” (Mark 2:17).

Jesus is for you. He has served you on His cross. When He was dying there, He prayed again: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). It was a prayer that all who walk in sin and darkness and confusion would be led to know that light and peace, forgiveness and life come through His death and resurrection for all.

Jesus lives and reigns to all eternity for us now. For all who repent of their ways that lead to death, He gives peace. For all who are weary of living in confusion, He gives rest. For all who long to come out of darkness, He is the light.