I Am the Light: John 8:12

Pastor Bart con­tin­ued his series on “Truth” Sunday. He looked at John 8:12 [show]ERROR: The IP key is no longer sup­port­ed. Please use your access key, the test­ing key ‘TEST
This text is from the ESV Bible. Visit www.esv.org to learn about the ESV.
, where Jesus says, “I am the light of the world. If you fol­low me, you won’t have to walk in dark­ness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” (NLT) He taught us that the Light expos­es our sin and at the same time it expos­es God’s love for us. John 1 [show]ERROR: The IP key is no longer sup­port­ed. Please use your access key, the test­ing key ‘TEST
This text is from the ESV Bible. Visit www.esv.org to learn about the ESV.
says that Jesus is the Light, the Light that brings life because “God’s unfail­ing love and faith­ful­ness came through Jesus Christ” (v 17, NLT). Our response is sim­ple and dif­fi­cult at the same time.

The Light expos­es our sins. We have a choice, to acknowl­edge our sins or to hide in the dark­ness. By acknowl­edg­ing our sins, we are one step clos­er to liv­ing in the Light. This of course is extreme­ly dif­fi­cult for us. No one likes to admit that they are sin­ful. No one like to admit they have any weak­ness­es or bad­ness at all. But this is the only way we can receive for­give­ness, by acknowl­edg­ing that we need it.

The Light expos­es God’s love for us for He clear­ly can see our sin even clear­er than we can. He is will­ing to for­give us of those sins and cleanse us of all unright­eous­ness if we only believe. God’s love for us is so great it real­ly blows me away.

This is sim­ple. We have reject­ed God. God can­not stand sin and must ban­ish it from His sight. He could do just that but He Loves Us. As such, he sent His only Son to take our place, that the pun­ish­ment for our sins would be placed upon Him and not us, if we only believe that we are sin­ful, need for­give­ness, and that Jesus died for those sins. The Light expos­es God’s love for us because it shows how sin­ful we are, how much for­give­ness we real­ly need­ed, and how inca­pable we are of every mak­ing up for those sins yet God still accepts us! Wow!

Ok, but that is only the first step. Pastor Bart exhort­ed us to not only step into the light but also walk in the light. He said to walk in the light is to live the life of love. He said the key to walk­ing in the light is about lov­ing God and lov­ing oth­ers and NOT obey­ing a list of do’s and don’ts. I cer­tain­ly don’t believe he was advo­cat­ing dis­obe­di­ence, rather, that legal­ism (fol­low­ing a bunch of do’s and don’ts to be saved) is not walk­ing in the light.

Now, I think this is where a lot of peo­ple mess up and why Pastor empha­sized love over law. The Light expos­es our sins. It is our nature to want to save our­selves and so we make a bunch of doc­trine, laws, canon, to say what is good and what is bad — as ini­tial­ly exposed by the Light. This is kind of fun­ny to me, for we appar­ent­ly think this is the easy way instead of accept­ing God’s love and for­give­ness and then liv­ing that life of love.

Well, maybe it is eas­i­er to fol­low a list of rules. To love God and to love oth­ers means we are plac­ing them as more impor­tant than our­selves. By fol­low­ing a list of rules, we make our own obe­di­ence as impor­tant and we can make/follow what­ev­er list we want. To love God and to love oth­ers expands the bound­aries of our lives to areas that we are uncom­fort­able with — our sin­ful natures don’t want to go there.

This is our chal­lenge, to live the life of love. To love God with all our heart. soul, and mind. To love our neigh­bors in the same way we love our­selves (put our­selves num­ber one). We must acknowl­edge our sin, ask God for for­give­ness, and maybe the hard­est part, accept that for­give­ness. As we accept God’s love for us, we can then show that love to oth­ers and accept them, just as God accepts them.

[edit on Tuesday] I was doing some study today in John and ran into John 3:18–21 [show]ERROR: The IP key is no longer sup­port­ed. Please use your access key, the test­ing key ‘TEST
This text is from the ESV Bible. Visit www.esv.org to learn about the ESV.
. It kind of bowled me over. I don’t remem­ber Pastor read­ing or refer­ing to this pas­sage but I am guess­ing he had cer­tain­ly read it and was influ­enced by this pas­sage if he didn’t men­tion it in his ser­mon. I am going to have to go back and lis­ten to the ser­mon again. But any­way, this pas­sage cer­tain­ly con­nects the Light with love. People love dark­ness more than the light because they know their sins will be exposed in the Light. “But who­ev­er lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plain­ly that what he has done has been done through God.” (NIV) Walking in the light not only expos­es our sins but our love for God and what He does through us — it pro­claims God’s for­give­ness, His Love, His faith­ful­ness to us.

I encour­age you to lis­ten to Pastor’s ser­mon to hear more of his chal­lenge to us. Go to www.flatlandchurch.com or down­load it from iTunes.

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