Text – Ephesians 5:8-14:
8 For once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of light— 9 for the fruit of the light is found in all that is good and right and true.
10 Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord. 11 Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to mention what such people do secretly; 13 but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, 14 for everything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,
Rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”
We have said before that Lent was originally a time to intensively prepare people for their baptism. However, Lent changed over time to become a time of intense reflection about one’s life and the upcoming commemoration of Jesus’ death and resurrection.
Today’s text has baptismal themes. “Once you ere darkness….but now you are light.” And “Rise from the dead and Christ will shine on you.” The darkness of death is eclipsed by the brightness and light of the new life in Christ. Paul reminds us in a baptismal passage, “…when you were buried with him in baptism, you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God….” Colossians 2:12.
Lent begins in winter when nights are long and cold. But it culminates in Easter morning when the warmth of the sun’s light brings forth life and flowers. “Sleeper awake!” said Paul. And awake we will, through the work of our brother, Jesus Christ, and our Father who sent him to do this work of redemption.
Father of Light, we see the dawn breaking. The light of the Resurrection draws us into a future of life and renewal and redemption. May we not be deceived by false ways that lead further into darkness. May our baptism now or in the future be a source and reminder as we live for you. In Jesus’ name I pray this. Amen.