Jesus said to the crowd: “No one who lights a lamp conceals it with a vessel or sets it under a bed; rather, he places it on a lampstand so that those who enter may see the light. For there is nothing hidden that will not become visible, and nothing secret that will not be known and come to light. Take care, then, how you hear. To anyone who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he seems to have will be taken away.”
In today's Gospel, Jesus says: No one who lights a lamp conceals it, rather, he places it on a lampstand so that those who enter may see the light.
The Good News of the heavenly kingdom is for all. We understand Jesus to be the Light of the world and His followers are also to be like lamps shining out for all the world to see. We know that preaching the Good News is our responsibility, yet there are strong tendencies for us “to keep our religion to ourselves and not foist it on others”.
Forcing others to believe is not on, even if it were possible. Inviting people to “come and see” is something else. We also believe that the Gospel message offers a way of life that brings great happiness into the lives of individuals. So, part of our communicating the message is as much through our lifestyle (“See! it works!”) as through what we say.
“Take heed, therefore, how you hear,” says Jesus today. It has to be a hearing which understands, accepts, assimilates and puts into practice. What is heard and assimilated has to be passed on. Otherwise it dies. But “to the one who has, more will be given”. And “he who has not [because he has not been hearing and absorbing properly] will lose even the little he has”.
Commentary on Luke 8:16-18