Matthew R. Perry

What Will You Do With the Light? (John 1:9-13)

In Devotional on December 19, 2006 at 4:26 pm

The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.  He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him.  He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.  But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

One of the nicest compliments a person could receive is that of being genuine and being real.  No pretensions, no over-the-top flattery, no putting on airs or keeping up those appearances.  There’s a computer term called WYSIWYG — what you see is what you get.

When we consider our Lord Jesus Christ, this is an apt description of him as well — what you see is what you get.  “The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world” (John 1:9).  This light is not deceptive as Satan is, who often masquerades as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14).  He is not like the light of the Old Testament in which the laws and rituals “serve as a shadow and a copy of things to come” (Hebrews 8:5).  He is not like the moon or planets that simply reflect the light from the sun — but shines brighter than the sun (Revelation 1:16).

He is the true light which comes into the world.   The genuine light.  The real light.  All other lights are fake or mere reflections. 

Yet what is the nature of this light.  In verse 5, John talks about how Jesus was “life, and the life was the light of men.”  In one way, this light gives life by shining the glory of God and enlightening everyone — not by a saving light but by a light showing God’s creative work in the world to everyone.  Romans 1:20-21 tells us:

For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.  [21] For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 

So the light of Christ shines in a darkened world.  So we see the nature of the light here expressed in John 3:19-20:

And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil.  For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 

My question this morning is, how will you respond to the light?  When he shines his light on you, will it be the light of salvation you see, or will you reject him, turning that light into one of judgment?  How you respond to the light of Christ give evidence as to whether you are receptive to him or rebellious toward him!

(To listen to the rest of this sermon, click here.  Right click and select “Save Target/Link As…” to download this to your computer.)

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