THE LIGHT OF LIFE
John 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. 13 The Pharisees therefore said unto him, Thou bearest record of thyself; thy record is not true. 14 Jesus answered and said unto them, Though I bear record of myself, yet my record is true: for I know whence I came, and whither I go; but ye cannot tell whence I come, and whither I go. 15 Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man. 16 And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me. 17 It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true. 18 I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me. 19 Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also. 20 These words spake Jesus in the treasury, as he taught in the temple: and no man laid hands on him; for his hour was not yet come.
Verse twenty one of this chapter, which begins the next discourse, starts almost with the same wording as does our verse twelve, which begins our lesson. John 8:21 Then said Jesus again unto them, .. And out passage ends with verse twenty stating, no man laid hands on him. And the last verse in the passage which ends the next discourse states, Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by. The point is that we have two similar, almost identical beginnings, and two similar endings, which show that these are two more discourses that our Lord had with the Jews after the Feast of Tabernacles in Jerusalem.
After the traditional procession for the priest to fill the silver pitcher with the waters at the fount of Siloam, with the thousands following behind singing, Save now, I beseech thee, O LORD: O LORD, I beseech thee, send now prosperity. Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the LORD: we have blessed you out of the house of the LORD. (Psa. 118:25,26), the Lord Jesus stands and cries, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. (John 7:37).
And now, after Jerusalem had been so well lit with torches everywhere, (insomuch that one Rabbi said there was hardly any difference between night and day during the Feast of Tabernacles), the Lord Jesus preaches on being both the light of the world, and The Light of Life. For since he is the Word by whom the world was made (Hebrews 11:3), and he made the world to be of a silent gospel revelation, he ofter drew from physical circumstances to reveal a gospel truth!
Romans 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:Psalm 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. 2 Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. 3 There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. And it was because Nicodemus could not see these “earthly things,” that the Lord could not show him any “heavenly things!” (John 3:12).
With the woman who came to draw water from the community well, he spoke of the living water of the Holy Spirit. John 4:10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. 13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: 14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
And after he had fed the multitude by a great miracle, he preached on bread! John 6:26 Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled. 27 Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed. 35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
And that earthly Jerusalem, being filled with light, is but a picture of the spiritual and heavenly Jerusalem, the church, flooded with The Light of Life! For those of the spiritual church, who are also the light of the world, being made kings and priests, bring their light into the church upon their every gathering! Galatians 4:25 For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. 26 But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.
Revelation 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. 24 And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. 25 And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.
But this knowledge was something that Israel was brought up under. These matters were brought to their minds by the Psalmist and their prophets. Psalm 104:2 Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain: Isaiah 9:1 Nevertheless the dimness shall not be such as was in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict her by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations. 2 The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.
The problem was in the application of these scriptures! They had such a false imagination of Messiah from their legal misinterpretation of Moses’ law, that they could not rightly apply these scriptures to God’s Messiah – Jesus Christ! Yet the Holy Spirit clearly applies Isaiah’s prophesy to the Lord Jesus by the pen of Matthew. Matthew 4:12 Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee; 13 And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim: 14 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, 15 The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; 16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.
John the Baptist’s father learned this by the Holy Spirit. Luke 1:78 Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us, 79 To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.
And yet, even though individuals were receiving this revelation, the system of the Jews religion, even upon knowing the scriptures, failed in knowing him, to the point of being instigators of his crucifixion! Acts 13:27 For they that dwell at Jerusalem, and their rulers, because they knew him not, nor yet the voices of the prophets which are read every sabbath day, they have fulfilled them in condemning him.
And listen to the Son of God commune with the Father concerning this matter: Matthew 11:25 At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.26 Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. 27 All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.
The Light of the World – In the first part of John 8:12 there is an unqualified statement. I am the light of the world! A solid truth no matter who believes it, or who does not! That is an eternal, unchangeable fact! It cannot be altered whether men in their logic can understand it, believe it, or prove it! And He, as that light of the world, was introduced in Genesis 1:3 to begin the creation of that world! And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And since the sun, moon, and stars were not created until the fourth day, the Person of Light illuminated, not only all that occurred on the first three days, but has illuminated every day since! Psalm 36:9 For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light. John 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men. 9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. Colossians 2:3 In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
But the reason that men love the darkness, rather than the light is that light was created to “rule” (Gen. 1:16), both the day and night! And men will not have Christ, the light of the world, to rule over them! Luke 19:14 But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us. And this then, is their condemnation! John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
Therefore those with remaining inner darkness within their souls, due to their unbelief in the Lord Christ, shall be cast into outer darkness throughout eternity. The Lord shall withdraw the light of his mercy from all who do not have his grace. And they shall dwell in that darkness that existed outside himself prior to creation. Matthew 6:23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! Revelation 16:10 And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain, 11 And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.
Yet, as stated, this is an unqualified truth! He is Lord of every lord, and King of all kings! 1 Peter 3:22 Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him. And he was already Lord when he got here! Luke 2:11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
The Light of Life – The second half of John 8:12 does have a qualifying phrase. … he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. For Christ is only The Light of Life to those given hearing ears and following feet by regenerating grace! John 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: Revelation 14:4b These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.
All of the Lord’s sheep – his elect people – being sovereignly given these two effectual things – hearing ears and following feet, – never shall walk in “the darkness” again! Remember that Light of Genesis chapter one and verse three? There he illuminated the natural creation. But consider the Apostle Paul’s writing concerning his creation of the spiritual realm. 2 Corinthians 4:6 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. And THAT is regeneration of the elect soul!
Now they – the true church – comes to be the light of the world. Matthew 5:14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. But they are only so, “in the Lord.” Ephesians 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
They are covered in his righteousness as with a garment, imputed to them as their sin was imputed to him. 2 Corinthians 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. Their feet are said to stand upon the moon, which shows that they are but reflectors of Christ, who only is the origination of all light! Revelation 12:1 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: The church is identified by having his imputed righteousness for her covering; the paths of righteousness in which her feet walk for his name’s sake; and has his gospel ministers as stars to guide her through the darkness of the world as a crowning tiara upon her head! Truly to those who follow him, he is indeed, the light of life!
Do not despair, dear believer! All shall be brought to light upon his return! Ephesians 5:13 But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. 1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.
Pastor Gene Breed.
August 14, 2014