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  • Writer's picturePastor Curtis A. May

Out of Our Darkness

Article for March 10, 2024

John 3:18–19 18Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil.


We see our world which is living in the “darkness” and the darkness in the world is getting darker.  Some people actually think that believing in God is old fashion.  Many do not get their children baptized, nor do they think baptism is necessary for themselves.  We truly live in dark times. 

Maybe this is the true dark ages.  We who believe have become too soft and complacent in our lives.  We think our place in God’s kingdom is just going to church on Sundays and keeping our mouth shut about God on the weekdays.  Not many care to spread God’s word, and we love to use the excuse that we are either too old or we have already done everything. 

We don’t like what we see but we don’t want to put the effort into coming together to change it.  We are not to be one in Christ but many in Christ.  Numbers matter as long as there is the will from God in us.  We who believe are being drawn into the darkness and soon we will be completely blinded by the world’s darkness.

Evil rules our hearts through its grievously devious, misdirected subtle slyness.  Say that three times really fast.  We are constantly misled, and the problem is that we are okay with that.  The world is not our friend, but Jesus Christ calls us friends, brothers, sisters, and the children of God.  So why do we shy away from the works set before us?


John 3:20–21 20For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his deeds have been carried out in God.”


We had a great town hall meeting this last Monday with the mayor of Rochester.  We, as in mostly pastors in and around Rochester and Fulton County.  I and some other pastors got to tell what our churches are doing for our surrounding community.  I was joyful that I could stand up first and tell what we do here at St. John’s.  I also was joyful to hear what other pastors had said about their church’s community help that they give out. 

One great thing that came out of that meeting is that we are a community of believers which makes up the body of Christ.  Another great thing that was relayed by each of us is that we, the churches, need to have a relationship with those in our community and even with each other.  And yet another great thing that was mentioned is that we are all God’s people, and we all make stupid choices and we all need each other.  We should all come together in the relationship with God and each other.  In this way we can all help those with hurts, hangups, and habits to overcome and see the salvation Jesus has bought for us all.

One more great thing we learned, even though most of us already know this, is that we are the legs, arms, eyes, and ears of Jesus Christ.  That means God works through the churches to build up His kingdom.  That is God choses to work through all of us, not just the pastors.  God works through His word, the Holy Spirit, His grace, and His mercy.


John 3:14–15 14[Jesus said:] “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.


Salvation comes through the word of God and through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Salvation is not something new to the Jews it has appeared many times as they journeyed in and through their Egyptian captivity, their escape from Egypt’s slavery, and their time wandering in the desert.  The Jews knew of God’s wrath, and they knew of God’s grace and mercy.

We too should take a lesson from the history of the Jews who stopped fearing God and live a life continually fearing God.  But sometimes, if not most of the time, we live too soft of a life and we take that life for granted.  We have had it too good, and we have not so much been punished for our sins, and we have not realized the grace and mercy we receive each day. 

Each day I grow older, each day I look back on my life, each day I see God’s grace and mercy poured out though my life.  Each day I grow fonder and fonder of our God and what Jesus did for all, and each day I praise and thank our God for all that I have received knowing I don’t deserve God’s gifts.


John 3:16–17 16“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.


Realize the love God has for you and realize you did not earn it.  Realize we have a God that does not condemn us but does everything to save us.  Realize that the fear of God is to love Him, for what we have is because of Him, so give Him praise and thanks always.  Realize that Jesus Christ died for our sins not because He had to, but because He wanted to.  Realize we have a Savior who died for us and a God who loves us to life!


Ephesians 2:8–10 8For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.


Let us walk with Jesus the perfector of our faith working through His death and resurrection, Holy Spirit, and His Holy Word.  We have much to praise and thank our God for because we have a God who loves us dearly.  God loves us so much that He wants to spend an eternity with us His creation.

Amen.


Written by Pastor Curtis A. May

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