In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, one God, Amen.
“We have seen the True Light,” we will hear towards the end of the Divine Liturgy,
we have received the heavenly Spirit; we have found the true faith, worshiping the undivided Trinity: for He hath saved us.
And I guard this carefully, it is a treasure for me. And I use it as a place of refreshment, somewhere I can go to restore myself to strength. It remains for me in my vault for safety—to prevent any from stealing what I have.
And the Lord looks down upon me in my pitiable state, “What good has the True Light done for you?” he admonishes me, “It would have been better for you to have remained in darkness than blasphemed the Light.” Because, dear brothers and sisters, the True Light, the Light of Christ, cannot be hidden—as a candle needs air to burn so does the True Light need to shine before all. And if I keep it to myself it will flicker into nothingness, if I raise it up it will burn all the more brightly.
“You are the light of the world,” the Lord says to you and he says to me. Not a teaching, not a building, but each and every one of us are the light of the world. “A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.” The light does not need to do anything strange, it merely needs to be what it is: a guide, a beacon, a sign of hope. Not something we guard to remain ours but an offering to the world. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
Let our Faith, our Faithfulness, shine out. Let it shine out by feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty, taking in the stranger, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and prisoner (see Matthew 25:31–46). Let it shine out by having love for one another as Christ has for us (see John 13:34–35). Let it shine out by even laying down our wants and desires, our very lives, for our friends (see John 15:13). Let it shine out by denying ourselves, taking up our own crosses and following Christ (see Matthew 16:24, Mark 8:34, Luke 9:37). And then, dear brothers and sisters in Christ, the Lord gives us today a promise: if we do these things and keep the commandments of the Lord, teaching others to do the same, we “shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
Let us this day, for the sake of the Gospel, live this life of hospitality and service, doing all things out of love for God and for our neighbour—and by this we shall let the True Light shine out as a beacon of hope and love. The Christian life cannot remain hidden only to us but must transform us into workers of the Gospel of the Resurrection.
May we, therefore, ascribe all glory, honour and worship to our incarnate and risen Saviour Jesus Christ, who is our path to salvation, together with his Unoriginate Father and the All-holy, Good and Life-giving Spirit. Amen.
Titus, my son, the saying is sure. I desire you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to apply themselves to good deeds; these are excellent and profitable to men. But avoid stupid controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels over the law, for they are unprofitable and futile. As for a man who is factious, after admonishing him once or twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is perverted and sinful; he is self-condemned. When I send Artemas or Tychicos to you, do your best to come to me at Nicopolis, for I have decided to spend the winter there. Do your best to speed Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way; see that they lack nothing. And let our people learn to apply themselves to good deeds, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not to be unfruitful. All who are with me send greeting to you. Greet those who love us in the faith. Grace be with you all. Amen.
— Titus 3:8–15
The Lord said to his disciples, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
— Matthew 5:14–19