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Text For The Month / Monatsspruch

Texts for the months of February and March 2013
Monatssprüche für Februar und März 2013

 

Februar 2013

Schaue darauf, dass nicht das Licht in dir Finsternis sei.
Lukas 11.35

Pass auf dich selbst auf! So könnte man diesen Spruch verstehen. Er steht in einem Abschnitt vom Licht, der so beginnt:

„Niemand zündet ein Licht an und setzt es an einen verborgenen Ort, auch nicht unter den Scheffel, sondern auf den Leuchter, damit die Hereinkommenden den Schein sehen.“ (11.33)

Im Matthäusevanglium steht vor diesem Vers sogar noch „Ihr seid das Licht der Welt“ (5.14). Zusammengefasst bedeutet das, dass wir Menschen Licht in die Welt bringen sollen, dass wir leuchtende Beispiele sind. Ein hoher Anspruch! Bernhard von Clairvaux, ein Mönch des 12. Jahrhunderts, hat passende Gedanken dazu, dass man dabei auf sich selbst achten soll, wie der Monatsspruch sagt:

„Schale der Liebe

Wenn du vernünftig bist, erweise dich als Schale und nicht als Kanal, der fast gleichzeitig empfängt und weitergibt, während jene wartet, bis sie gefüllt ist. Auf diese Weise gibt sie das, was bei ihr überfließt, ohne eigenen Schaden weiter.

Lerne auch du, nur aus der Fülle auszugießen, und habe nicht den Wunsch, freigiebiger zu sein als Gott. Die Schale ahmt die Quelle nach. Erst wenn sie mit Wasser gesättigt ist, strömt sie zum Fluss, wird sie zur See. Du tue das Gleiche! Zuerst anfüllen und dann ausgießen. Die gütige und kluge Liebe ist gewohnt überzuströmen, nicht auszuströmen. Ich möchte nicht reich werden, wenn du dabei leer wirst. Wenn du nämlich mit dir selber schlecht umgehst, wem bist du dann gut? Wenn du kannst, hilf mir aus deiner Fülle; wenn nicht, schone dich.“

„Schaue darauf, dass nicht das Licht in dir Finsternis sei.“ Achte auf dich und versuch nicht mehr zu tun, als du kannst. Dann wirst du fröhlich leuchten, bei allem was du tust.

Udo Bauer

 

 

March 2013

He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive. Luke 20.38

God is a God of the living, not of the dead. Who is alive and who is dead? Usually everyone who breathes and moves around is considered alive. With the advent of modern medicine a debate has opened up, where science and ethics deliberate whether someone is alive or not. In ancient times when no-one could measure brain function or keep people alive with special apparatuses it seemed clear cut who was alive and who was dead. And to some scientifically minded sceptics called Sadducees it was clear that dead was dead and there was no way back via a resurrection. So they tried to illustrate the silliness of the idea to Jesus by constructing a case from scripture that was difficult to solve if there were a resurrection of the dead:

A woman married and her husband died. According to the law (Deuteronomy 25.5-6) the brother of the deceased would have to marry her. When there were seven brothers and one after the other married a lady and then died, the question arose who would be her husband after the resurrection.

Surely she couldn’t have seven husbands? God wouldn’t allow such a dilemma to happen by resurrecting the dead – that was their reasoning. Christ answered that there is no marrying after the resurrection. We will be like the angels. Therefore the dilemma of the Sadducees does not exist. Then he counters their claims by himself referring to scripture:

“But in the account of the burning bush, even Moses showed that the dead rise, for he calls the Lord “the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob”. He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.” Luke 20.37-38

To the Sadducees Abraham, Isaac and Jacob may well have seemed dead. But according to Christ they are alive to Moses and to God, despite having died centuries ago. Will the Sadducees have been convinced by this argument?

What do you think about Christ himself? He died nearly 2000 years ago. Can he still be alive? To some theologians he is alive where he is preached: in his words, in the Bible and the Church(es). But that is a form of life that depends on our actions and can therefore run out. And it is not much to hope for for the average Christian, because such a resurrection doesn’t apply to millions of deceased. Whose great-grandparents are still alive in this way in the family, let alone anywhere else? That would be just a hope for a few very special people, who are remembered by the size of their architectural, artistic or philosophical output. John Smith would be truly dead and forgotten after a few generations.

I believe Christ and the Gospels spoke of more than just living in the memory of people. But they couldn’t explain it clearly to us, because it is truly “out of this world”, a mystery. That’s what Christians celebrate every Easter, indeed every Sunday: The resurrection of Christ and our hope to be raised from the dead that gives us power to live happily despite the prospect of our more or less imminent death.

Udo Bauer

 

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