I Am The Light Of The World

 

 “When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." (John 8:12)

 

This is second “I am” in the Book of John concerning the revelation by Jesus Christ of God Himself. It gives us another point of view in understanding the relationship between us (the church) and the nature of God. “I am the Light of the World” has the following meanings for us:

 

1.       God is the light of our lives. At the very beginning of his gospel, John propounded the intimacy of the relationship between light and life. “In him was life, and that life was the light of men.” (John 1:4) So it was that God first created light in the process of creating the heavens and the earth, and made this light shine through the darkness that was over the surface of the deep. (Genesis 1:2-3) Most of the living things on this earth rely on the energy of the sun to continue its existence. To these living things, there is life where there is light. Without light there is no life.  Christ pointed out that we need God, just as living things need light to maintain its existence. We must rely on this source of life in order to gain eternal life (1 John 5:11-12)

 

2.       God’s word is the light of our lives. When Christ said that He is the light of the world, and whoever follows Him will never walk in darkness, He meant that in a world where morality and conscience have been corrupted, God’s word becomes the guiding lamp of our existence. As Psalms 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path”. When Christ was teaching the people in the temple courts, the teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They wanted Jesus to judge her in order to trap Him and give them a basis for accusing Him. Before the Law of Moses, the adultery that the woman committed was indeed a sin in contravention of the Law of God. But before Holy God, the self-righteousness and malicious intent to test the Lord harboured by the teachers of the law and Pharisees was a sin hidden in the human heart. This woman’s sin was discovered. Her shame was manipulated into an opportunity to hurt the Lord. We see how great was the darkness of these teachers of the law and Pharisees! When Christ declared, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her" and the crowd heard Him, they began to disperse one at a time starting with the older people. On the one hand, the Lord’s words expressed His wisdom. On the other, they showed the power of the word of God. It is like light that exposes the hidden evil of men. The unfortunate thing was, when the crowd heard the word of the Lord and was convicted, their conscience was illuminated by the Holy Spirit, but they did not take the opportunity to repent and return to God. Instead they left. This is like people who hear a message that convicts them at a gospel meeting, but do not have the faith to face the light of God and leave the venue.

 

3.       Our lives rely on the light of God’s word, and not on the light of our conscience. When people fail and sin, their conscience to a certain extent can still manifest the effect of illumination so that they can judge between right and wrong. Those teachers of the law and Pharisees were admonished by their conscience and did not further harass the woman (John 8:9). Christ is the light of the world. He tells us to leave the darkness and calls us to follow Him. Following Him means to live according to His word and act according to His example. We no longer rely solely on our conscience to do things. If we truly believe in the Lord and have received His grace of salvation, we will have the brilliant nature of God’s life. This nature of life removes our interest in the dark, wanton existence of the days of old. It spurs us into a desire to live constantly under the light. Living under the light means that every dark affair will drive us closer to the central core of light.

 

By: Daniel To