1John 1:5-7, “This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.”
John 8:12, “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.”
I was born and raised in Yakima, Washington and lived there until about 1984. One of the favorite spots my wife and I loved to visit was a recreation site on Chinook Pass called Boulder Cave which was about 50 miles from Yakima past the small town of Naches (nah-cheese). We would love to walk through the cave, and though the cave itself is only about two to three hundred feet long, (more of a tunnel than a cave) it would literally get pitch black inside because of the way it curved and the way the stream cut through it. When in the middle of it, you couldn’t even see your hand in front of you; but as soon as you turned the flashlight or lamp on, a wide swath of darkness faded away to show the detail inside the cave. Since my wife and I were so young, it was always a great walking trail; we always had a great time.
There’s a peculiar thing about visiting a cave such as that one, not everyone came prepared with a flashlight or lantern because they would hear how small it was, thinking they could easily walk from one end to the other. What a surprise when they realized that just a little way into it, a light WAS necessary.
In situations such as described, which didn’t happen very often, an individual, family, or a few people would follow someone who had a lantern or flashlight. The trouble with that, is that they were bound to the people with the light to lead them out, no matter how long the person with the light wanted to take and sight-see. Did you catch that? They were BOUND to the person with the light to lead them out!
Jesus stated this principle spiritually in John 12:35, “Then Jesus said to them, “A little while longer the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going.” No truer statement has ever been said!
So it is with the light that resides in each of us. When we are young in the Lord, that light may not be so bright. Now it’s not because the Lord doesn’t reside within us, but rather, like an onion, there are many layers of which the Lord needs to work with that have a tendency of blurring the light within; notice I said blurring, not totally obscuring because like an onion, those layers that make us who we are at the time the Spirit awakens us are transparent.
As we continue to fellowship with other believers, as we search and study the Scriptures and as we “practice” following the leading of the Holy Spirit in the service of others, those extra layers that have been blurred or blocked allow that inner spiritual light, to become more and more transparent. This is a process that the Lord uses to mature and strengthen every person who determines to have an intimate relationship with Him. The greater and more intimate a relationship we develop, the brighter the “light of the Spirit” becomes in us; and as the Scriptures teach in Matthew 5:16, this light Glorifies our Heavenly Father and makes it especially joyful to those who see it shining.
This is the same principle that the first disciples followed while in the presence of the “Light of the world.” When we are young spiritually, we tend to follow those that demonstrate the same light that the early disciples did. Those who are more spiritually mature have “practiced” walking in the Spirit’s light to the point where it becomes a lifestyle, a way of living without giving it a lot of thought. Think of the cliché that “practice makes perfect!” If we have been following the example of Christ Jesus, then when He does return, as the Apostle Paul states, “……we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;” — Ephesians 4:13.
This is how Christianity, TRUE discipleship of Christ Jesus should be. Do you know what the term given to Jesus means when we call Him Christ? I wonder how many who claim to be “Christians” really do. The term Christ means The Anointed One. This is why in my writing and in my teaching you see and hear “Christ Jesus” more so than “Jesus Christ.” You may think it doesn’t matter, but in the world of spiritual ignorance, the latter term is used like a name, very much like, I am Roland Ledoux; if on the other hand we were to state, “Jesus, THE Christ,” it would raise eyebrows for sure, but it would be more accurate, in stating not just the “Name above every Name,” but also His position of spiritual Anointing and Authority. “Christ Jesus” on the other hand, is stating right from the beginning that He IS the “Authority and Anointed One, Jesus, the Name above every Name!”
What does this have to do with the “light within??” Easy, we receive that “light” by following the LIGHT, the Anointed One. The term “Christian” literally means, followers of “The Anointed One!” The Anointed One is Who gives us Light as we follow Him. As He is our example, or should be, we in turn should REFLECT the same anointing! It is the anointing that is the source of that light! AND, it is THAT light will lead others out of and through the darkness.
The world is our “Boulder Cave” and it doesn’t take long being in the world to experience that utter darkness that makes it our enemy in the spirit. Is our light shining in this world, or is it boxed in, within four walls and a roof? Can you imagine just how helpful a light in a box or a bag would be to not only others following us, but to ourselves as well? Maybe you can understand what I mean now; our light shining only in the “box” that we designate for the place where we choose to “worship” is keeping that light from those who truly need it, out there in the darkness; the ones who have entered the “Boulder Cave” called life.
If what I have stated is the truth, then you may be asking yourself, or me; what then is the reason for even attending church?
That, my brothers and sisters, is coming next!