Bible Ballistics: BBs #236 Arise, Shine–Light Has Come!!!
We talked recently about the multitudes who are asleep to the truths of God, at the least, or completely deceived, at the worst. This burden is still on my heart and I’d like to address it again today.
“Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” Isaiah 60:1
Of course, Jesus is that light, the light that came to not only bring truth to those who would receive it, but to “BE” truth—He is God incarnate, in very essence truth! And just as He is the only way—He is the only real light that can open our eyes to see truth.
“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:6
Jesus is the only way to God, through His death, burial and resurrection, which purchased our forgiveness and redemption (See 1 Cor. 15:3-6)! Jesus said HE is the only way to the ‘Father’—not works, not the law, not religion, not charitable acts of kindness (which can all be good things)—only Jesus can and will bring us into a relationship with God, and eternal life. And Jesus gives NEW LIFE NOW!!! He transforms us and gives us the power to live a different way—the way of light—and the only way to walk in the light in a dark world. And Jesus had a lot to say about ‘light’!
“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.” John 8:12
“As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” John 9:5
“I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness.” John 12:46
Jesus tells us clearly that He IS the “light of the world”—not “a” light but “the” true light of and for the world, and those who follow Him will NOT continually walk in darkness. It grieves my heart greatly that so many around us have latched onto a gospel of “convenience” and “easy-believe-ism” which implies and even blatantly claims that simply ‘praying a prayer’, or ‘claiming the name of Jesus’ without ever realizing or knowing the conviction of sin by the Holy Spirit of God, will guarantee them a “get out of hell free card”; that they need not recognize that they are lost “sinners” in need of repentance and a real trust and commitment to the only one who can deliver anyone from the penalty of sin! God forbid! ONLY JESUS can give life, and He will, to all who will bow before Him as the God Man, who is fully God and fully man, who came to live in a body of flesh, so that He could die for MY sin and YOURS; believing that HE not only died for our sin, but He rose victorious over sin, death and hell (and yes HELL is real, God says so). He will save all who receive the “new birth” and become a “new creature” in “Jesus”.
Jesus also said that if we “follow” Him we will not walk in darkness, and while we can’t do anything to add to our salvation, if we are genuinely “born again” we will walk in “newness of life”. Being dead to ourselves and alive in HIM:
“Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.” Romans 6:4
Paul gave a clear presentation of this truth as he stood before King Agrippa, and proclaimed that his purpose was to share the gospel that he personally received from Jesus. That he was called and sent:
“To open their eyes,
and to turn them from darkness to light,
and from the power of Satan unto God,
that they may receive forgiveness of sins,
and inheritance among them
which are sanctified
by faith that is in me.” Acts 26:18 (Paul recounting the words of Jesus)
Paul is telling us that the gospel delivers sinners from darkness into the light—the very person of Jesus Christ, and also into the light of His ways working within us. Peter describes it as seeing the “day star arise in your hearts”.
“ We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:” 2 Peter 1:19
The light of Jesus enables us to “Arise, shine” because “thy light is come”, and that light IS JESUS! And Jesus Himself said that it is knowing Him, not just talking about Him. When we truly know Him, we can “arise” and “shine” because He is “in us” via His Holy Spirit. (See Romans 8:9)
“This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” 1 John 1:5-10
Walking in the light, doesn’t mean we are sinless, but that we are pursuing Jesus and living out what He has put within us, as His child. It means that we desire and pursue a more intimate walk with Him, knowing that HE is working in us; knowing that when we fail and sin (and we will), we will see it as sin (agree with God), and confess our sin as sin and then He will not only forgive us, but cleanse us from “all unrighteousness”. And walking with Him we can have confidence in His work in us because:
“And we know that
all things work together for good
that love God,
who are the called
according to his purpose.
29 For whom he did foreknow,
he also did predestinate
to be conformed to the image
of his Son,
that he might be the firstborn
among many brethren.” Romans 8:28-29
So, my challenge to us is that we will be the light the world needs to see. That we will treat the “gospel” with integrity and share the truth that Jesus changes and transforms lives from “darkness unto light”; that we are saved “from” our sin, not “in” it! Let’s “Arise” and “Shine”—HE is our light!!!