Today I wanted to talk about John 8:12, in which we read the second out of seven “I AM” statements. This was Christ’s way of declaring Himself to the world that He was in fact, their Savior- their long sought Messiah. By stating that He was the Light of the World He was announcing that He alone was the way to gain spiritual light- truth, knowledge, and reunification with God the Father.
In this world, we have the ability to recognize and see two different types of light. When we first enter this world through birth, we are introduced to the light that we can physically see. This light is important for it allows us to interact with the world around us, but this is so insignificant compared to the second Light- the greater Light. This was so important for us to comprehend that God sent Jesus to Earth in order to announce this news to 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 (NIV)
We see in this statement that when Jesus speaks of the Light, He is speaking of the Light of His Word, of His Truth, and of the most precious gift- that of Eternal life and reunification with God the Father. Those who follow Him, accept this gift of Salvation, will never again be blinded by the darkness of sin and separation.
Our lives could not be sustained without the physical light that we can see. Without the sun, climates would change, temperatures drop, plants would shrivel up and die without the necessary light. In this way we also need the Spiritual Light given to us by Jesus. Without this Light, we would surely perish forever.
We were given two promises based on the condition that we follow Jesus. In return we are promised that we will never walk in darkness (promise of Salvation). We confess our sins and ask forgiveness for them, and by doing this we stay in the Light of His Truth and Salvation. The second promise is that we too will become Lights in the spiritual darkness of the world.
“Therefore do not be partakers with them; for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.” Ephesians 5:7-8
“You are the Light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives the light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16
While we are also lights to the world, it is not coming from us, but as a reflection of the Light cast upon us by Jesus Christ. We accomplish by living a life that is glorifying to Him, being a witness to those around us, and showing that we are honest, trustworthy and morally righteous. We are viewed by those who have not yet “seen” the Father, and we must shine- not cover it up by acting like this world, but rather as those who are apart. It must be obvious, for we want them to receive salvation as well- the Father longs to be reunited with them.