16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
This passage is as clear as it gets. So I won’t attempt to clarify it anymore…just respond to it with a challenge and a prayer. The first verse has to be one of the most famous verses in the New Testament. For God so loved to world… It is an awesome verse and an awesome passage..and for once I am using the word awesome in a proper context. In Short…the Love of God is clear, Our world is a dark place and God has sent light into this world through Jesus. If you spend any time at all looking at the life and the person of Jesus and you compare the light Jesus offers today and through eternity with what the world or any other religion offers, it is hard to take a pass on Jesus.
To be sure…I am not talking about liturgy, catechism, denominations or any other religious order or function assembled by people. At this moment I am talking about Jesus, the pure, unfiltered, undiffused light of the world sent by God to offer us hope for eternity. All we have to do is believe. But I am challenged by this passage. I is one thing to say that I believe with my mouth, yet how do I show I believe with my life. Is there more love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness and lets not forget…self control in me today than there was yesterday. Does my life expose that I love the light…or do I really still like to have a few dark corners to retreat to.
And so I pray… Dear God help us all who claim to love the light…Who claim to yield our whole heart, soul and mind to You though Jesus. Help us live by truth and live open lives. Not so we live condemned lives, and not so we might hold our blessed position of being loved by You through Jesus as adopted children to ourselves, but that so the world might see the light you desire to show through us and glorify You our most high God. That we might see the “awesomeness” of you love and the truth of your word written in Matthew 5:15-16 truly come to life.
15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
So help us love your light dear God and not hold it for ourselves but pass it along to all the dark corners of our world.