“I came, not to judge the world, but to save it.” (Jn 12:20)
Today’s Passages: Jn 12:44-50; Act 12:24-13:5a
Meditation: Today’s meditation verse clearly directs us to the purpose and nature of our ministry. If we follow this method without fail we will surely be effective in our ministries. In the gospel of John many a time we find Jesus speaking about judgment and condemnation. In all these places he makes it plain that he is to save the world rather to judge it. Elsewhere he says, “God did not send his Son into the world to be its judge, but to its savior.” (Jn 3:17)
Several times in our lives, we have failed to save others only because we did not understand the real meaning of this word of the Lord: “I came, not to judge the world, but to save it.” (Jn 12:20) With good intention we all go for mission but end up in big failure because we continue to judge. In this connection it is good to remember the words of Mother Theresa: “If you continue to judge others, you will not get time to love them.” How true and meaningful it is!
Therefore, let us keep this winning ‘mantra’ in our lives; wherever we go and whatever we do. We may be working with the good ones or the bad ones, the educated or the uneducated, and the rich or the poor. There are of course several possibilities of judging either of them. However, the purpose of mission and ministry is to save others, not to judge them. Would there be anyone righteous, if the Lord God had decided to judge the world? Surely no one! Remember that it is not our merit that we live but his loving mercy.
Jesus didn’t like the Pharisaic attitude of false righteousness. Several times we find Jesus criticizing them because of their ‘righteous attitude.’ The evangelist Luke notes, “Jesus also told this parable to people who were sure of their own goodness and despised everybody else.” In the parable of the prodigal son, unlike the elder son, we see the loving father finding no time to judge his son rather received him into his own.
In order to do this, we need surely the help of the Holy Spirit. We should continually pray for this divine gift and he will guide each one of us. The word of the Lord says, “Bad as you are, you know how to give good things to your children. How much more then, will the Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Lk 11:13) Today’s second reading gives a beautiful description of it: “While they were serving the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said to them, ‘Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul, to do the work to which I have called them.” (Acts 13:2)
Prayer: Lord God, we thank you and praise you for your daily eternal bread. O Lord, send your Spirit upon us so that we may be properly led by him and inherit the kingdom of God. Sometimes we are attracted to the false teachers and prophets who guide us only to judge others, not to save them. Make us surrender to the word of God and live an authentic Christian life. We ask for this grace through Christ our Lord. Amen!
Greetings: God is with you! Wish you a blessed and fruitful Easter Wednesday!