(The Information & Edification Series – Batch 4)
In John 8:12, Jesus said,“…I am THE LIGHT of the world: he that followeth me shall NOT walk in darkness, but shall have THE LIGHT of life.“
This verse is quite informative. For, the world is in darkness. The Word of God tells us that. Jesus however, is THE LIGHT of the world. He gives off light, emanates light and is light. If a person claims to be following Jesus therefore, it is impossible for that person to be engulfed in darkness, walking in darkness and comfortable in darkness. For, if we are following THE LIGHT, which is Jesus, then logically, we too will be walking in light and pursuing after light because light is where our Lord is.
Those that are truly followers of Jesus have been indwelled by his light. Hence the reason that Matthew 5:14-16 states:
- “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.“
Isaiah 60:2 also states on the condition of the world, contrasted with the glorious effect of the light that emanates from the Lord, “For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.”
Those that are truly followers of Jesus therefore and have been indwelled by his light, hate darkness and love light (because it is in them) and so they desire that which pertains to light are always pursuing after it and aiming to walk in it.
It thereby follows that a person who ‘claims’ to be a follower of Jesus but loves darkness, is content to remain in darkness and is walking comfortably in the direction of darkness without any qualms whatsoever, does not really have the light of Jesus in him and is not a genuine follower but false.
Think about it: You cannot actively be following light and be in darkness. Darkness is devoid of light, so if where you are is dark, then it means that you are not pursuing after the light, although you claim with your lips that you are.
In simple terms, imagine that there is a light pole on the left in one area, that is shining brightly and giving off light. Imagine also that a mile away, on the right, there is nothing but deep darkness. Imagine that you are in the middle of these two areas and must decide whether to take your journey to the left (where the light pole is) or to the right (where complete darkness is). If you decide to walk in the direction of the light, the more you move in that direction, the lighter the place becomes because you are pursuing after light. Eventually, you will be in light and walking squarely in light.
If on the other hand, you decide to move to the right and in the direction of darkness, in doing so, you are moving even further away from where light is and becoming more and more engulfed in darkness.
If you find yourself in darkness therefore because you have moved to the right and not where light is, it would be foolish and delusional of you to say that you are walking in light. For, you have not been walking in the direction of light but in darkness!
Where you are in terms of these two spectrums (light and dark) therefore and where you are comfortable to remain are good indicators as to what you really are. For, followers of Jesus want nothing to do with darkness (even when they are tempted by it) and are always striving to move away from it and to walk instead in light. Even if they were to be taken by force, blindfolded and dropped into the midst of darkness or duped into entering it, once they come to their senses, they will be searching for a way out (because the light of Jesus within them will not permit them to be at peace in that dark place) and they will be moving towards the light.
What am I saying? Well, like the deer panteth after water when it is thirsty, followers of Jesus, people who he has placed his light in, crave light. They cannot stand darkness. They are therefore always seeking to escape darkness (even if they fall into it, relapse or backslide) and they make it their life mission to go and be where Jesus, THE LIGHT of the world is. For, they know that Jesus, THE LIGHT is their source of sustenance. In his light is life. Anywhere outside of his light is a place of sterility, confusion, curses, wilting, a lack of progression, failure, oppression, dissatisfaction, sorrow and stagnancy.
John 1:4 rightly states of Jesus, “In him was life; and the life was the light of men.”
In John 8:12 above, Jesus said: “…he that followeth me shall NOT walk in darkness.”
‘Followeth’ speaks of ongoing pursuit. As believers in the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, we don’t follow today and then arrive tomorrow, while here on earth. No. On the contrary, we are always moving, always seeking to draw closer to Jesus and more of his light. We are involved in an ongoing state of following.
In Philippians 3:10-14, Paul spoke of his ongoing pursuit to Jesus, THE LIGHT, stating:
- “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I FOLLOW AFTER, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.
- Brethren, I COUNT NOT MYSELF TO HAVE APPREHENDED: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and REACHING FORTH unto those things which are before, I PRESS TOWARD the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
As stated before, even if as a believer, we fall or find ourselves, through some trick of the devil (due to us not being as watchful or prayerful as we ought to have been), in some dark place, we do not sit there but get up in the power of the Lord’s might and resume the course. For, we are followers of THE LIGHT.
Proverbs 24:16 rightly states of the just man and therefore includes those who have been justified by their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, “For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.”
Even if, like the Egyptians, who pursued after the Israelites as they made their departure, darkness yelps at our heels as we seek to move away from it and go in the direction of Christ, THE LIGHT, we will not give up or surrender the fight but will press on, fight off with the sword of the spirit which is the Word of God and move forward. Satan’s minions cannot keep us from this goal, for greater is HE that is in us, than he that is in the world.
1 John 4:4 states, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is HE that is in you, than he that is in the world.” The light that shines within us is more powerful than any power of darkness seeking to enslave us.
In light of these truths, be honest with yourself therefore: Where are you at? Have you truly been following Jesus (THE LIGHT) or have you been comfortable in darkness? Is the world which is in darkness and all that it has to offer, more alluring to you than Christ?
1 John 1:5-8 states:
- “This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”
1 John 3:5 states of Jesus, THE LIGHT of the world and on what characterizes the lives of those that truly follow him:
- “And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
- Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother. For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous…We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.”
The verses above therefore make it clear that a person who is truly following Jesus, THE LIGHT, will not be living a life of sin because the light of the Lord is in him and sin is darkness.
This does not mean, as 1 John 1:8 reminds us, that those who walk in the light never sin. They do because the sinful nature is still within them, warring daily with the divine nature of the Lord that is also within them. However, those that walk in light do not make that which is sinful, their domain, do not enjoy it, dwell comfortably in it and crave after it. When they sin, provided they have not quenched the spirit with their repeated disobedience, they are convicted by the Holy Spirit of their wrong, repent with godly sorrow and return, to where light is. When they confess their sins to the Lord, admitting that they were wrong and departing from it, Jesus’ blood cleanses them from all unrighteousness.
The follower of Jesus therefore, does not dwell or live in darkness but if in his actions or words, he falls into darkness or relapses into it, once he has not quenched the spirit, he strives to get out of it and back to the light. For, light is where his Lord is.
When a person takes a path that is sinful and displeases God, he is walking in darkness. Some examples of walking in darkness include harbouring hatred in one’s heart for one’s brother or sister in the Lord (as Cain did for his brother Abel), cultivating a lifestyle of foolish talking or jesting, coveting after things like money or someone’s boyfriend, fiance or husband and living in fornication, adultery or some other kind of sexual immorality without repentance.
On these and other areas of darkness, Romans 13:11-12 and Ephesians 5:1-17 urge us to follow after God who is light and to stay far from darkness. These scriptures state:
- “…now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.” (Romans 13:11-12)
- “Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them. For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret.
- But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.”
As the scripture above attests therefore, the light manifests things. It tells you as is. If your face is dirty for example, the light will show that up and not hide it, as darkness would do. It therefore reproves when there is need for reproof because light is truthful. This is one of the reasons that people prefer to stay in darkness. Darkness provides a cover for their evil ways. Criminals for example, plan to execute most of their crimes in the night, under the cover of darkness. They regard daylight to be too risky, as they know that it is easier to be seen, draw attention and be caught red-handed then. The same holds true spiritually.
John 3:16-21 states of Jesus (the Light of the world):
- For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
- And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For EVERY ONE THAT DOETH EVIL HATETH THE LIGHT, NEITHER COMETH TO THE LIGHT, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.”
People who are in darkness therefore and enjoy it, hate the light, which is Jesus Christ, no matter how religious they make themselves out to be. They hate the light and refuse to come to it because they desire to continue along that path of darkness without being reproved. They don’t want to be told that what they are doing is wrong, evil, rebellious, wicked and will one day incur the wrath of God. They have no desire to change and light demands this of its followers or to give up that which pertains to darkness. Like the rich young ruler who enquired of Jesus the way to eternal life but eventually walked away from THE LIGHT and in the direction of darkness (because he was not willing to give up his idol, which was money), they therefore are content to remain in darkness.
Those that are religious among them that walk in darkness and therefore give a mere empty show of godliness while denying the power thereof, not only delude themselves into believing that they are followers of Jesus but they also then seek out false teachers, preachers, pastors and prophets, to tell them what they want to hear, which is anything but the light of the gospel and sound doctrine.
In 2 Timothy 4:3-4, Paul wrote to Timothy, telling him of such people:
- “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”
In 2 Corinthians 4:2-6, of genuine teachers of God’s Word, who were walking in light and therefore were about promoting the Lord’s truth and nothing else, it states:
- “Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God.
- But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest THE LIGHT of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who commanded THE LIGHT to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give THE LIGHT of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.“
In addition to sharing the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, hating and forsaking darkness and abiding in truth, another key characteristic of those walking in light, is love: Loving other brothers and sisters in the Lord and loving people in general, even the seemingly undeserving, like those who have positioned themselves against them, as their enemies.
Love is a key attribute of those who are genuinely following the Lord because God who is light is also love. Hence, 1 John 4:7-21 states:
- “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
- Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us. Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.
- There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love him, because he first loved us. If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.”
In conclusion, I will simply quote something that Charles Spurgeon stated, which I find to be very appropriate to this Article’s theme. He stated and it is true:
- “Christ is the great Peacemaker, but before peace, he brings war. Where THE LIGHT cometh, the darkness MUST retire. Where truth is, the lie MUST flee; or, if it abideth, there MUST be a stern conflict – for the truth CANNOT and will NOT lower its standard, and the lie MUST be trodden under foot. If you ‘follow Christ’ you shall have all the dogs of the world yelping at your heels.”
(Written on 10th February, 2022, uploaded on 16th February, 2022)
Ironically, on the very day that I uploaded the above Article to this Website and expanded on it where necessary, there was a nationwide blackout due to a loss of electricity. The entire country therefore (with the exception of the little island that I live on) was engulfed in complete darkness and for several hours, starting from some time in the evening from about after 12.00 p.m. and continuing in many areas, into the wee hours of the next day. What this meant is that, as night crept in and took over, many people had no choice but to sit in complete darkness, this only being alleviated with candles, lamps, battery-operated lights (for those who were fortunate to have), generators and so on. Some were even grateful to see a bush fire, miles and miles away, as it brought some light to the area.
The occurrence (where a whole nation was without electricity at the same time) was so strange, that the government has issued instructions for an official investigation to be commissioned, to figure out what or who was the cause.
When I heard the news, I remembered the Article I had written since 10th February but only decided to upload to the Website that very evening and thought to myself: Wow, what a coincidence! Yet, it was also a reminder and symptomatic of the state of my country and the world in general. My country and the world in general are engulfed in spiritual darkness and our only hope for deliverance, salvation and restoration is Jesus, THE LIGHT.
We would be foolish to remain in darkness when LIGHT has been made available. Yet, unfortunately, this is the choice that many make, to their detriment.
(Addendum written on 20th February, 2022)
Dear Reader, if you found the above Article to be interesting, informative, edifying or beneficial, you may also be interested in reading the following:
- Note 99 – ‘Are You Serving The Real Jesus?’
- Note 202 – ‘Are You Regenerate Or Unregenerate’
- Note 203 – ‘How Important Is Truth To Christianity?’
Under the ‘SINGLE Daughters’ Page:
- Note 248 – ‘A Light Above The Brightness Of The Sun’
Under the ‘BROKEN Daughters’ Page:
- Note 14 – ‘Christians Are Not Sinless But They Sin Less’