2017 10 01 Lorna Laister Jesus s the Light of the world
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Jesus Light of the World SERMON SUMMARY Lorna Laister 1 October 2017

What does it mean when Jesus says he is the light of the world? What on earth can this mean to you?

The I am statements are telling the hearers of the words that Jesus is God. Jesus is God.  With these sayings, Jesus described His Person and His Mission. Here is Jesus telling the religious leaders about himself.

The people to whom he was speaking were Jews. What were they hearing when Jesus spoke. Remember that it matters – what did this mean THEN before we can unpack what it means NOW

Scholars believe that this incident took place during the Feast of Tabernacles. The Feast of Tabernacles was like an enormous Harvest Festival. It celebrated God’s provision for His people throughout history and remembered the deliverance from Egypt by the many miracles. It required all the males in a household to attend the celebrations in Jerusalem.

We see Jesus coming and injecting a new meaning to this feast/festival. Every day during the feast there were 2 ceremonies conducted there, a water ceremony and a light ceremony

High up in the Women’s Court were four large stands that each held 4 golden bowls. The bowls could only be accessed by ladders. These 16 golden bowls were filled with oil and used undergarments from the priests served as wicks, making for large lamps that were lit at night. The rabbis said that when the lamps were lit at night, all Jerusalem was illuminated.

It was joyous, happy, people singing Psalms and dancing. There were no street lights!! Just the lamps from the huge golden bowls

Then in the middle of these celebrations, Jesus said” I am the light of the world”!!!!

Imagine now that you are a religious leader. These ceremonies are maybe the most religious of the whole year. And Jesus tells the people who he is

READ John 8:12-13

the Jews were angry. The Jews recognized the term “I AM” as a term for deity. It means self-existence and eternal being.

READ Exodus 3:14

the Pharisees all understood--” I AM the light, I AM the Way, I AM the door.” Those 7 “I AM’s” given in the scripture that relate to natural things that they all understood. By these, Jesus made His claims to deity.

Do you remember when Jesus said, “I am the bread” that he was realising the manna. I AM THE MANNA? The wonderful provision of God for his people. Later during the feast, he presented himself as the living water

READ John 7:38

THE JEWS WOULD BE PICTURING The pillar of fire. This cloud.

Read Exodus 13:21-22

So here we have Jews reliving the picture of guidance and protection from their God. As they walked over unfamiliar paths God directed them. Where the cloud went – they went. And the Lord was in the cloud

The Lord spoke from the cloud, sometimes in judgement, Israel could never forget that God was with them so long as they were able to see the cloud.

Within this context, and with this background, Jesus stood to announce, “I am the Light of the World. I am the cloud. I am God with you.” At His birth, He had received the Name “Immanuel,” “God with us,” and now He openly declared Himself as God with His people.

So here is Jesus presenting Himself as the Light of the World, GOD as the One who guides His people as they move through unfamiliar territory. He is God with His people, and He is the Protector of His people, but He is also guiding His people.

Application, when the Master moves, we should be prepared to move with Him. When He stays in one place, we should be content to wait until He is ready to move. It requires a great deal of us to trust Him to lead us where He wills.

We must never be too quick nor too slow to move with the cloud. Go when Jesus moves. Only then.

Last week Gill was talking about the reality of Jesus being the source. That remembering how much we are forgiven spurs us on to live out the live of love and service. How when we are affirmed and assured of the forgiveness we have received, we cannot stop loving. We will never serve out of duty, or because we feel we have to. So today we have another image that can help us to get back to himself when we flag. When we doubt. When we forget – if you like

Jesus is the light. What was the purpose of the Light? What does light do?

  1. 1. to expose sin and darkness. We cannot hide our sin. We need to face them, confess and live in the forgiveness.
  2. Reveals the truth. The light shines and shows us the way of the truth
  3. 3. Our Witness We live and walk in the light that Jesus gives in order to reflect that light to others. We allow the light of Jesus to be seen in our lives as we identify ourselves as followers of Jesus.

All of these 3 things the Israelites were supposed to understand.

The pillar of cloud and fire revealed God. God exposed sin and darkness. His chosen people were supposed to be the example to the world – they failed

The pillar of cloud and fire revealed God. God revealed the truth.              His chosen people were supposed to live in the truth – they failed

The pillar of cloud and fire revealed God. God witnessed.                      His chosen people were supposed to witness to the surrounding nations – they failed

Jesus IS the Light . He IS the source. He is the one we have to get back to. To look up to. He’s the One we need in order to live our lives as Christians.

READ Colossians 2:6-7

We must do this in our spiritual journey. Look up to the Light that Jesus gives. We will have direction despite all the darkness around us. When we follow Jesus, walking in His light, we can avoid walking blindly and falling into sin. He lights the path ahead of us so we can see how to live and what decisions to make.

If we are to receive the Light He wants to give, we must be willing to remove all those things that would prevent us from receiving or things that would cause the light to go out. What causes the light to go out in your life? Indifference, laziness, not making it a priority? Only you can answer that.

Thank you, God,!

 



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