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God has called us to be the light. We are to shine in the darkest places. In fact, Jesus expects us to be the light. This is interesting because we seem to remember that Jesus is the light of the world (John 8:12) However, we seem to forget that Jesus said the same thing about us. The light is on the inside of us waiting to shine brightly in this dark world!
Jesus gave us quite the commission because He knew that we had important work to do. Sometimes we think of the light as doing charitable things, feeding the homeless, giving clothing, sharing Jesus, etc. Although these are all good things it was not what Jesus meant by being the light. We should do these things, but to be a light there is so much more.
You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16
We are to carry or shine His light. This light will never go out nor grow dim. You do not try to hide the light. You allow it to shine out of you. As you do this, you will glorify your Father. You glorify your Father by being the light, but it is not the way you think.
1. Miracles cause the light to shine
Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him. I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing. John 9:1-7
Here Jesus claims that He is the light of the world. He says that He must do the works of Him who sent Him. As He said these things, He healed the sick person. Therefore, this is what it means to be the light. You do the works that He did. If He did miracles, so should you.
If you want to shine as a light in the world then you must do the works that He did. He did not just feed the hungry. Jesus did not only give people the things they needed after a storm. He healed their bodies, set the bound free and showed them the Father.
I am not against good works. My wife & I do many of the things I mentioned, but we want to do more than just fill people’s stomachs. We want people to encounter Jesus through us.
2. The light causes you to show mercy & forgiveness.
When Jesus had raised Himself up [i]and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers [j]of yours? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” John 8:10-12
Notice once again when Jesus mentioned He was the light of the world. In context, He is saying that by His showing mercy and forgiveness, He was being the light. We must be people who always show mercy and forgiveness. We cannot judge and condemn people and call ourselves Christians. Even if the things people are doing are sinful, we do not need to point that out. We must point them to Jesus and His forgiveness for sins.
The religious people accused. They had an excuse to hate and murder this woman. Consequently, the light was exposing what was in their hearts. Jesus did not say anything to them. Their own sins began to appear sinful as they saw the mercy and forgiveness of Jesus.
3. It’s time to shine our lights in this dark world as Jesus told us to do.
And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give. Matthew 10:7-8
This is the way we can shine as lights. Do the same works that Jesus did. He called us to do miracles. Jesus commissioned us to do the same works and even greater ones than He did (John 14:12). Miracles should be a way of life for us.
Jesus did not waste a minute of His life here on earth. He did what He was supposed to do. He showed us how to shine our lights. We shine through miracles, mercy, and forgiveness. We realize that anything we have is through Him. He gave us what we did not deserve. We must show people that Jesus did the same for them.
Allow His light to shine through you. Decide to make miracles a part of your life. Do not just be a Christian when you go to church. Live like Christ wherever you go and whatever you do.
Author of Trusting God’s Timing
Founder of House of Refuge Street Ministries