Let Your Light Shine – Part One

Matthew 5:14-16

Jesus said, “I am the light of the world….”

John the Baptist said of Him:  He is “the true light, which lights every man that cometh into the world.”  (John 1:  9)

Jesus said of you: “You are the light of the world….” The verb tense and sentence structure used in addressing this statement to believers means “You and you alone are the light of the world.”  That means you are rare, purposeful, important, unique, distinct, and valuable.  All are qualities that speak of worth.

Jesus is THE light.  We are lights.  We are stars – He is the Sun.  A star’s light is merely a reflection of the sun.  Christians shine by derived light.  Our radiance is to be gathered from the Son.

This is illustrated by a young, sullen nurse who attended a revival meeting in Columbus, Ohio.  On about the third night she gave her life repentantly to Christ.  On her way home she stopped in a drug store where she was known.  A friend said, “You look like someone has just lit a candle inside you.” “They have,”  she said.  “What I mean,” said the friend, “is you look like you just fell in love.”  “I have,” she said.

John 1:4, 5 describes Christ, the light, as shining in “darkness.”  The word for darkness is “skotos.”  It is used of evil.  It is a summary reference to fallen mankind.  Verse 10 indicates it is synonymous with “the world.”  Darkness, the world, is the antagonist of Christ, the light.  The expression doesn’t simply mean the world behaves negatively toward Christ, it means the world hates the Light.

John said the world didn’t apprehend the light.  It didn’t take it in.  The darkness didn’t defeat the Light.

The Greek word “katalambano” which can be translated as comprehend, or apprehend, or overcome, is a strong word literally meaning an attack by evil powers.  It actually means “to pounce upon to bring it under its power.”  Surprisingly it is in the aorist tense, meaning at a point in time. Here as the aorist verb it is a reference to a single occurrence.  The reference is to Calvary. 

There the two forces engaged in mortal combat and Light won over darkness.

You can let your light shine with assurance of its visibility and potential victory.

The essence of light is to shine.  If it is light, it shines.  All deep convictions demand expressions.  All personal experience of the power of Jesus on our character shows in our conduct.

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5: 16)