From: Su Min
Today we turn to Matt 5:14-16. We read and hear Jesus our Lord and Master speaking to us, teaching you and me:
Jesus says, "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill can not 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 room. Let your light shine before men so that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him is there is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5).
In declaring that his disciples are light, Jesus ascribes to them the same quality as God the Father and Himself, God the Son.
Jesus is the light of the world: He himself declares, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. (John 8:12)."Jesus tells us that we are the light of the world, and as lights of the world we are visible by all: just as a city that is set on a hill is visible to all that surround it, a lamp placed on a lampstand it gives light to all who are in the room. There is no escape: as children of God as followers of our Lord God's light shines through us. We give light to all who are in the room.
He exhorts his followers "Put your trust in the light while you have it, so that you may become sons of light (John 12:36)".
Jesus requires his disciples to give light to all those who are around them. Knowing that a lamp gives out light by the self sacrificial process of consuming its own oil, and a candle gives out light by the self sacrificial process of burning up its own wax, till finally all the oil is burned up and the lamp is empty, and the candle itself totally consumed, does our Lord intend to teach the self sacrificial aspect of love his followers were required to demonstrate? I believe he does. "You are the light of the world."
Jesus goes on to describe the result of our being light of the world:
a) Others may see our good works.The nature of the good works we are to display is taught to us in all sections of the bible, from Genesis to Revelations. Indeed "all scripture is God-breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work (2 Tim 3:16-17)". God expects us to "look after the widows and the orphans in their distress (James 1:27)." The word of God reminds us that faith and works go hand in hand, although we achieve salvation by grace as a gift, and can not earn it by works, faith without works is dead (James 2:17). Bearing much fruit glorifies the Father (John 15:8). The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self control (Gal 5:22-23).
b) God is glorified.
Therefore, as light of the world, we are to study all scriptures, look after the widows and the orphans in their distress, let others see our love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self control, and in doing so, let the world see the love of God and the light of God though our good works.
Jesus ends this teaching by telling us that the purpose for us being lights to the world and letting others see our good works is to glorify God.
The desire to praise God and glorify God should be the basic aim of all the children of light. Indeed God dwells in the praises of his people. Do not forget to do good and share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased (Heb 13:16).
What a joy it is to sing praises to God. One day, God willing, we will be able to join many angels, thousands upon thousands and ten thousand times ten thousand as they encircle the throne and sing "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honour and glory and praise" (Rev 5:12).
Let us pray:
Father, thank you for your lesson today.
Father, thank you for choosing us making us using us as your lights.
Father you appoint us as lights to all people.
Teach us Abba, to walk in your paths, to do good works, that we may glorify you.
In Jesus name.
For any comments or enquiries please write to Dr. Lim Su Min
Back to Antioch's Well
Back to Antioch's Home Page