Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Light

John 1:1-18

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

He was in the beginning with God.

All things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made.

In him was life, and the life was the light of men.

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.

He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him.

He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light.

The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.

He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him.

He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,

who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

(John bore witness about him, and cried out, "This was he of whom I said, 'He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.'")

For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known.

      I believe we are called to be lights. I think the Bible is pretty clear on that:

      Matt 5:14-16

      "You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.

      Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.

In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven."

We are lights in the darkness. The world is a wicked place and evil has darkened it. We, with Christ shining through us are lights, lights that show others the way to Truth.

But in my Bible study this morning I discovered something that I had never seen before. (Don't you just love it when that happens?)

We all know that many times we are called to be Christ-like:

1st John 2:6 "Whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked."

1st Cor 11:1 "Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ."

Eph 5:1-2 "Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God."

However, for as many times as I read John chapter One I never noticed that Christ came into the world as the Light. Let's look at the metamorphosis:

John 1:1 -- We have the Word. The Word is suppose to be the Spirit, many commentators have said the Word is the Spirit and apart of God.

1:3 -- All things are in the Word (Spirit).

1:4 -- In the Word (Him) was the light of men.

1:5 -- The Light (Word... Him... Spirit... God) shines in the darkness.

1:7 -- He (John) came to bear witness about the Light.

1:14 -- The Word (Light... Spirit...God) Became FLESH. (Jesus!)

1:15 -- John bore witness: "This was He of whom I said 'He who comes after me ranks before me, because He was before me.'"

The "He was before me" is a call-back to John 1:1. The Word was in the beginning. The Word was before John.

I had never realized that through this chapter we get the Light of life as it is fully God, fully man, and fully the Holy Spirit. We have the divine trinity explained clearly for us to see. The fascinating part is it also proves that Jesus is not merely a man, but fully God.  For in the first verse it says the Word WAS God. But then as the chapter goes on the Word morphs into the Light, the Light into the Flesh, and the Flesh is Jesus Christ.

I see now that we are not only called to be Christ-like, not only called to be the light in the darkness, but we are called to be both simultaneously because they are one in the same. Now, I could be way behind the times on this realization, so maybe you know all this already, but even if so I want you to consider this:

What type of calling is it that says we are to be LIKE Christ? Is that not the greatest calling man has ever been given? We see men are born to be great leaders, generals, kings, presidents, people are born with the "upmost of callings". Yet us, as Christians, every single one of us great or small has the SAME calling! We are all commanded to be like Christ. But look at it this way... this is the greatest calling because by telling us to be Christ-like, we are being called to be like a Divine spiritual being that is fully God, fully Spirit, and fully Man. We are called to live our lives in a way that mimics that of a spiritual Being that was around before the foundations of the world.

This is a great calling, this is a calling we simply cannot refuse. It is by far the hardest to achieve, but farther still the greatest to be rewarded. 

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