My first area of thought is a simple question: Who is the Light of the World?
Again therefore Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of life." (John 8:12)
Here Jesus proclaims that He is the light of the world. So it would appear that the standard Sunday School answer will work here - Who it the Light of the World? - Jesus!
While I am in the world, I am the light of the world. (John 9:5)
He repeats this proclamation here in John 9.
I have come as light into the world, that everyone who believes in Me may not remain in darkness. (John 12:46)
And again in John 12.
But in the Sermon on the mount we get a different take.
You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. (Matt 5:14)
When our question is posed to Jesus, we get another answer today. Who is the light of the world? You are! That's pretty empowering isn't it? Jesus said that you (yes, I'm talking to you!) are the light of the world.
So how is it that He is the Light of the World, and we are the light of the world. Check out this bit from the first chapter of John:
He [John the Baptist] was not the light, but came that he might bear witness of the light. There [in Jesus] was the true light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. (John 1:8-9)
You see, Jesus is not only the light, but he is the lighter. Check out this prophesy from Isaiah about our day. (my opinion)
Arise, shine; for your light has come, And the glory of the LORD has risen upon you. For behold, darkness will cover the earth, And deep darkness the peoples; But the LORD will rise upon you, And His glory will appear upon you. And nations will come to your light, And kings to the brightness of your rising. (Isaiah 60:1-3)
I have heard many folks say our job is to reflect the glory of the Lord before men, but I say Jesus is calling on us to be more than reflectors. When I read these passages (feel free to read more than what I have listed here, this is just a taste) I hear the Lord saying He is the source of all light, but He sets us aflame - like candles and lanterns, not mirrors or moons. We don't simply reflect His glory, we are set ablaze with His glory, and we shine the light He has given us in the darkness, gross darkness, He has trusted us to illuminate.
I love that! What a great job He has given us. My mother always used to tell me "Bloom where you're planted." Well today I say: "Shine where you're screwed in!" [Tweet This]
Can you shine the light into the darkness He has assigned to you today? Perhaps you can share your victories with us, to encourage us to shine in our own darkness.
All scriptures are quoted from the NASB.
Light of the World (Photo credit: Wikipedia)