One of the great themes of John's gospel is the wonderful truth of Christ as the Light of the world. In fact if one does a search of the word light in the Bible one would find that the term is used extensively as a metaphor for God, the nation Israel and the sons and daughters of God who have been born again. And in this sense the body of Christ by implication is also depicted by the concept of light.
There has been much conjecture, all unproven, that the concept of God as the divine light was borrowed from Zoroastrianism which has indeed influenced Eastern Philosophies, Islam and some Christian fringe beliefs. The main difference between the other faiths and the term as used in the Bible centres around the function of light in mans spirituality.
Apart from the scriptures the term light in other faiths means in general a divine presence specifically an unknown and mysterious ability of gods, angels, or human beings to express themselves communicatively through spiritual means, rather than through physical capacities. Such a definition is unheard of in the scriptures and is foreign to the holy text for the risen Christ is the mediator between God and mankind.
Furthermore no one according to Biblical truths is born with, or has a divine light within them as described above. Yes man was formed in the image of God and God breathed into Adam the 'ruach' or breathe; but not a divine light. Yes we are made in the image of God but such an image has been scarred, disfigured and ruined by the darkness of sin. Yes we have been made in the image of God, not the image of a divine light.
Therefore let no one convinced you that we all have access to God because of a mysterious divine light that is common to all. Neither can these same people argue from the first few chapters of John's gospel, for his text does not support such an understanding. It was only those who received Jesus the light and believed on him that they able to share the light of Christ, as co-heirs of Gods glory.
Therefore we can safely state that when Jesus stood up in the temple at the Jewish Festival of Light and proclaimed that he was the light of the world this was something entirely new. For his hearers, such a statement would not have been confusing/misunderstood; for the Old Testament had references to God as light and the Jewish nation as a light to the Gentiles. But for a 'flesh and blood' person claiming to be the light, was utterly worthy of stoning.
There is only one sure way of obtaining the light of God; that is to be born again through a supernatural transfiguration of our being so that we become a new creature; the old is washed away replaced by the holiness of Jesus. This means that Christ the light of the world is now our light and we are partakers of the divine glory. But this does not mean that we have somehow become 'spiritual beings' with a mystical pathway to God; no this is certainly a false teaching.
To have the Light of the Biblical God within us means to have the very life of Jesus Christ born into our spirits enabling us to now become sons/daughters and co-heirs with Christ in Gods glory. Ephesians 5. Note that this re birth comes to us from the outside for the life of God comes into us, meaning, the light was never within us at first.
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. 11Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.12It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. 13But everything exposed by the light becomes visible~and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.
Now that we are children of light in Christ, it is upon us to find out what pleases the Lord; then to practice such things until they become 'habits of the light.' In so doing we will become changed from glory unto glory as our deeds and way of walking will expose the things of darkness and bring glorify to our Father. By this will all men know that we belong to God for the fruit of the light will be seen by all and give glory to God.
With this mind we are called to walk in the light as in 1st John chapter 1, not in the light of my own conscience, but in God's light. If I will walk there, with nothing held back or hidden, forgiving others then this amazing truth is revealed to me: 'the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses [me] from all sin' so that God Almighty can see nothing to rebuke in my spirit. Therefore, and this follows on; there is nothing that Satan can condemn us on.
Therefore we must with boldness continually look God in the face about our self and our doctrines/beliefs, so that each time we teach/speak, the glory of Gods light will be shining brightly; just the face of Moses shone after he had spent time alone in Gods light/glory. But he was unaware of the glory shining from his face for our focus is on Him who redeemed us and who is the beginning and end of our faith not on our whiteness.
In this way we will be the light of the world shining in the darkness as ambassadors of Christ for we will be seated as on a hill giving light to all our neighbors.
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May the light of Christ be reflected by us.
Wonderful blog, so full of truth. Like K, may the light of Christ living in us be allowed to shine the glory of The Father to the world as a city set on a hill.
Blessing in Christ,