The Gospel Today
Monday of the Fifth Week of Lent
Jesus spoke to them again, saying,
“I am the light of the world.
Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness,
but will have the light of life.”
So the Pharisees said to him,
“You testify on your own behalf,
so your testimony cannot be verified.”
Jesus answered and said to them,
“Even if I do testify on my own behalf, my testimony can be verified,
because I know where I came from and where I am going.
But you do not know where I come from or where I am going.
You judge by appearances, but I do not judge anyone.
And even if I should judge, my judgment is valid,
because I am not alone,
but it is I and the Father who sent me.
Even in your law it is written
that the testimony of two men can be verified.
I testify on my behalf and so does the Father who sent me.”
So they said to him, “Where is your father?”
Jesus answered, “You know neither me nor my Father.
If you knew me, you would know my Father also.”
He spoke these words
while teaching in the treasury in the temple area.
But no one arrested him, because his hour had not yet come.
Reflection (Sem. Herwyn T. Bulaun)
In any court proceeding, human testimony plays an important role. Very seldom does a case against a person prosper without the testimony of human witnesses. The case will be strengthened if the testimony is validated by two witnesses. Furthermore, the testimony of the witness brings much weight in the case if he has known credibility and integrity.
Jesus Christ in today’s Gospel spoke of the testimony about Himself. He mentioned two very important witnesses about the truthfulness of who He is. First, the testimony of the Father who testifies the same truth on what Jesus did. Jesus was in the world to obey the will of the Father and never to do things which were in contrary to His will. The second one is the deeds He does. There was no prophet who was able to do what Jesus did. He cured a man born blind. And His greatest testimony was His willingly embracing the cross to show to all people the great mercy and compassion of God.
In our life, we are always confronted by different testimonies about ourselves. There are things that through our testimony we make a stand on for what we believe and what we keep in life. There are instances that because of the influence of the world, we make our testimony based on the standard of the world.
However, the Gospel today shows us that Jesus Christ made a testimony about the love of God; that he embraced even death to bear witness to God’s great love for us.
When I decided to enter the seminary, I was confronted by the world. The world witnessed that I should not enter the seminary because of my weakness and sinfulness. The other was the witness of God that says that even my weakness and sinfulness can be a way to bear testimony His love and mercy. I am not saying that now I can already make a testimony for God, but even in those times when I failed to testify, those were opportunities for the grace of God to flow.
In the coming days, we will commemorate the great testimony of Christ. He embraced death, a painful death. May we, like Christ, live our life as a testimony to God’s mercy and compassion.