A Bible study through John 1-6
Living in the northern part of California in the winter, darkness is a very real thing—both literally and metaphorically. The days are short and darkness descends in the late afternoon/early evening. Add in stormy days and the gloom can become oppressive making the metaphoric darkness a real issue. Seasonal depression is a serious issue here and COVID has not helped in this department. But by far the spiritual darkness present is the most dangerous and rampant.
However, spiritual darkness is not just confined to remote, northerly parts of the globe during winter. It has been prevalent throughout the world since Adam and Eve’s fall in Genesis, and it continues to permeate every people, culture, society, and nation. No one is immune or can escape from the dark world we live in, and it is not something we can dispel in our own strength. However, light has come in the person of Jesus Christ.
Jesus is the light of the world. He pierces the darkness with divine light that brings life to all who see and believe. John beautiful explains and outlines this truth by writing:
“In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. … The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” ~John 1:4-5, 9-13
Darkness and light cannot coexist in the same space. Light will always drive away darkness. However, when light is absent, darkness is present. This is the true in both the physical and spiritual world. And where light shines, life is born. Not many things can live in darkness. And the few creatures and plants that are able to survive look ugly. Likewise, we cannot experience true life when living in spiritual darkness. And when we live in complete darkness the fruits we bear are ugly and sparse. However, Jesus came to bring light—the light of life.
Jesus is the light of the world and His light that pierces the darkness is unstoppable. It floods, invades, and defeats the power of darkness and brings life to men. However, notice what the Apostle John pointed out about this light. He wrote that though the Light of the world was in the world, the world did know or receive Him. Another translation states that though the world was made through Him, it did not recognize Him. The very world Jesus created did not recognize or acknowledge their Creator. He came to dispel darkness, but the ones He came to save did not even notice. In fact, many rejected His arrival and great gift of freedom.
However, Jesus is the Light that not only eradicates darkness, but also gives life. Through Him we can be made new, be born again into a living hope, and be reconciled as children of God. This is the gospel, the good news, and the reason for John’s writing. So are you feeling the crushing weight of darkness and the oppression of evil? Good news, the Light that brings life has come. He has defeated death and darkness, and has brought new life to all who receive Him.
Therefore, what are you going to do with the Light? Will you receive or reject the One who came to dispel your spiritual darkness? Will you step into new life in the light of Jesus?
“Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’”