Jesus Christ is the light of the world. He is the Source and Revelation of all that is true. When we observe Him we see God as He truly is. When we look at Jesus we also see man as God intended him to be. The question is, how do we walk in the light we have in Christ?
We Must Follow
Let’s look again at what Jesus says in John 8:12.
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
According to what Jesus says here, the key to walking out of darkness and into the light is following Him. There are three critical elements to following Christ.
We must turn away from processing life without Him. This is what the Bible calls repentance. Repentance means to turn after thought. Once we reach the conclusion that we really haven’t done too well on our own, we have to fully surrender to Jesus and allow Him to take the lead. That is what making Jesus Lord is all about.
Have you ever tried to follow someone down an unfamiliar road? What happens if you lose sight of them? You are left to find your way on your own. That can be terribly frustrating. By the same token, if we are going to walk in the light by following Jesus, we must keep Him in sight at all times. That means we turn to Him again and again throughout our day so we never lose contact with Him. The ancients called this practicing the Presence of God. It is living in the awareness that the Lord is always with us, and allowing Him to be our Guide throughout our day.
Obedience is also critical in following the Lord. Sometimes He may lead us in ways that are costly and uncomfortable. Welcome to life in the Kingdom! No one ever said it would be all fun and games. If we are going to follow the King, we must walk in the way He directs no matter where it takes us. The good news is that He never leaves us to ourselves on the journey. He is always with us, empowering us for the fulfillment of His agenda.
Children of the Light
We become children of the light through following Jesus, the Light of the world. Let’s look at what the apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesian church in Ephesians 5:5 – 10.
5 For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not become partners with them; 8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.
Having once been the embodiment of what life without God looked like (you were darkness), we are now to embody what life with God looks like (now you are light in the Lord). We walk as children of Light by…
- Receiving light — walking in the truth of who God is and who we are.\
- Reflecting light — displaying the reality of life in God both in our character and our actions.
- Transmitting light — bringing others into the Light by speaking the truth in love.
If we are truly walking in the light, the fruit of our lives will bear it out, which, according to Paul, is that which is good and right and true.
Life in the Light
To the world walking in darkness without the knowledge of God, grasping for whatever will give it a sense of meaning, Jesus comes as the Light of the world. In Him we see God for who He really is. We also see ourselves as we were designed by God to be. And by simply following Jesus, we will no longer walk in darkness. We will walk in the pure light of truth. This will also cause us to be lights in the world (Matthew 5:14). This is the fruit of living in the Reign.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.