Essential Christianity - Our Condition
The second sermon in a series on essential Christianity by Pastor Cary Fry.
God is light (1 John 1:5).
This idea of God being light is common to Johnís writings, he shares similar thoughts in the Gospel he wrote. But what is John getting at when he says that "God is light?"
- Physical light surrounds God
- Pillar of fire at night for the Israelites (Exodus 13:22)
- Mosesí face was radiant from being in Godís presence (Exodus 34:29-32).
- Jesus glorified is so bright that John in vision fell at His feet (Revelation 1:12-17).
- Light can refer to the life that God possesses (Psalm 36:9)
- Godís word is referred to as light (Psalm 119:105).
- Light can indicate moral conduct (Ephesians 5:8-13).
So, all these thoughts are probably included in Johnís idea of what he means to say, ďGod is light.Ē In short John is stating that God is all perfect, there is no defect of any type in Him either physically, spiritually, or relationally.
We are not light (1 John 1:8,10).
Itís amazing to me how many sinless people exist in the world. In my years as a pastor Iíve had the opportunity to talk to many people about things that they were doing that were wrong and it just amazes me how sinless they feel they are:
- The man who had a girlfriend on the side felt like it wasnít hurting anything and that it made him a better husband.
- The person who was practicing a homosexual lifestyle who firmly believed God was blessing his activity and he was happier than he had ever been.
- The person who would always make a negative comment before we would start our church service believed he was just speaking the truth.
- The person who is playing video games until all hours of the night. Itís my way to relax.
- And unfortunately, there is me. I am able to see the sin in everyone elseís life but somehow itís okay in my life (or at least not as bad).
This human condition of sin blindness reminds me of John 3:19, "This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil."
John is emphasizing Godís perfection and our imperfection for a reason. The Gnostic sects had this idea that there was not good or bad, righteous or sinful but rather there was the physical and the spiritual. As human beings we are physical therefore we just do these things but they arenít wrong. In other words a Gnostic could cheat his friend out of $1,000 and be okay with it because thatís just what happens in the physical world.
So, John comes out with both barrels blazing, "God is light and in Him is no darkness at all and by the way, we all are sinners."
Godís solution (1 John 1:7, 9)
- Walk in the lightÖ The thing that moves us from sin is to walk in the light. But what does it mean to walk in the light.
- "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.
- So, Jesus is the light and if I follow Him Iím walking in the light.
- John says there are two things that will happen when we are walking in the light:
- We will have fellowship with others who are walking in the light.
- We will be purified from sin through the blood of Jesus.
- Once we are in the light we begin to see things that we have never seen before. The other evening I turned on a light in our living room and when I did I immediately saw this big cobweb hanging in the corner of the room, never noticed it before although it probably wasnít new. The difference was the light revealed its presence.
When the light of Jesus begins illuminating our lives we begin to see things that we never noticed before. Again in John 3:19-21, "19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men 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 his deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God."
Some feel that we must confess our sins before we come into the light, before we come to Jesus. This is impossible however because we canít see what we are to confess unless Jesus first illuminates it. So, it is important that we come to Jesus as we are, walk into the light where we are and not wait until we see everything perfectly.