Afraid of the Light


“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light” – Plato

I remember as a child, I really hated to sleep with no lights on nearby. I wanted the hall light, the light in my closet, or night light on. Mom and Daddy tried to convince me that there was nothing to be afraid of, but it was a hopeless case.  I would imagine the most monstrous creatures lurking under my bed and in the shadows, that were cast from the street light flowing onto the walls of my room.

My last panicked exercise before shuddering off to sleep in terror was to pull the covers up over my head so those flesh-eating creatures might forget that I was cowering beneath the blanket.

The conflict of light vs darkness is the epic battle of nature. In the spiritual realm that conflict is also found.

As I grew older my fear of the dark subsided. I never fully lost that heightened awareness when I was rounding a corner into a darkened area.

But it wasn’t until The Light of the World illuminated my dark heart that I was finally fully able to peer into the blackness of night without fear gripping my heart.

The Light

John 1:1-5 (CSB)
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things were created through him, and apart from him not one thing was created that has been created. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, and yet the darkness did not overcome it.

John 1:10-13 (CSB)
He was in the world, and the world was created through him, and yet the world did not recognize him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, he gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in his name, who were born, not of natural descent, or of the will of the flesh, or of the will of man, but of God.

I find it nearly impossible to pick out a favorite verse or passage from the scriptures. Each time I feel like I may have found the ultimate passage I find another that I love just as much. But If I were forced to pick a section of scripture, that would become the only scripture I could have access to the rest of my days, it would be these two passages in the opening of the Gospel of John.

If it were allowed I would include verses 6-9 which talk about John the Baptist but for brevity and focus I’ve separated out those four verses.

Jesus IS the Light

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.

Notice ‘Word’ is capitalized thereby making use of it as a personal pronoun. Therefore, this use of ‘Word’ points to another noun in the sentence. That other noun is a ‘who’ not a what. So, who was this ‘Word’ referring to?

Genesis 1:1-5 (CSB)
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness covered the surface of the watery depths, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” There was an evening, and there was a morning: one day.

There are a couple of things that we want to take note of in this passage. If you want you can read on to verse 25 for all the details of the creation event, but what I wanted to point out was ‘God said’.

Time and time again through the following verse you’ll see ‘God said’, ‘God said’, God said’… God isn’t diluted, ‘God’ was speaking to someone. Even though you might have considered this just a figure of poetic writing or not we come to the 26th verse.

Genesis 1:26 (CSB)
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness. They will rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the livestock, the whole earth, and the creatures that crawl on the earth.”

‘God said, “Let us make man”’! See that? Let us.

Jesus the Creator

As the first chapter of John tells us this creator of the world and all we know was ‘With God’ and he ‘Was God’.

This concept didn’t gel for me for a long time, but the second segment of the scripture in John you see that this ‘Word’ was the light of the world.

All things were created through him, and apart from him not one thing was created that has been created. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. That light shines in the darkness, and yet the darkness did not overcome it.

I skipped over the section talking about John the Baptist but included this:

He was in the world, and the world was created through him, and yet the world did not recognize him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, he gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in his name, who were born, not of natural descent, or of the will of the flesh, or of the will of man, but of God.

He came to his own’; He Jesus the Creator!

Unfortunately for many, they didn’t accept Him. But for all who did and do; to them, He gives them the right to be children of God.

God references

A cursory reading of the Old Testament might leave the reader assuming, that these references to God are pointing to God the Father. However, I want you to make a contextual leap, to understand that these references to ‘God’ in the Old Testament, are typically not referring to God the Father; they are mostly referring to God the Son.

The Trinity is the amazing manifestation of God! We often refer ‘God the Father’ as simply God. Likewise, we refer to ‘God the Son’ as Jesus and ‘God the Spirit’ as the Holy Spirit.

Each manifestation of God can accurately be referred to as ‘God’.  God living in us is, in fact, the Holy Spirit or God the Spirit.  References to Jesus are pointing to God the Son.  And of course, we speak of the Heavenly Father we are pointing to God the Father.

When John cites the ‘Word’ being the creator, later in the first chapter you quickly realize that this ‘Word’ was not only the creator; He was also the Son of God; Jesus!  Now go back and look at the first chapter of Genesis and see this reference to ‘God’ is apparently God the Son; the Word referenced in John, who we know is Jesus; God the Son! So, beginning with the first few verses in Genesis we see that Jesus is referred to as simply ‘God’.

When I realized this, I had to dig a bit deeper to and looking at the passages where ‘God’ interacted directly with man.

Habakkuk 1:13 contains the phrase “Your eyes are too pure to look on evil”, referring to God the Father. This got me thinking of the functional role of ‘The Son’ in the interaction with ‘His’ creation.  God the Father didn’t create us or our universe, that was God the Son. It only stands to reason that it was God the Son who interacted with ‘his’ creation throughout the Bible. It only makes sense that the God that created would also be the God that interacts.

Now there are references where clearly God the Father is referred to, but the clear majority of the ‘God’ references point to God the Son.  It’s not that God the Father was or is absent.  On the contrary because God the Father exists beyond the bound of our space and time, allowing Him to be omnipresent and omniscient.  This is because He, God the Father, is everywhere and experiences all time simultaneously, He knows everything about anything. Including us, to the most intricate detail.

For years I read the books of the Old Testament and assumed the citations of God were talking about God the Father. It wasn’t till later that the realization that it was God the Son not God the Father that was making these appearances. That realization changed my perspective of who Jesus is and further elevated the holiness of God the Father.

So, two things I’d like to draw out here. 1) Jesus is the creator.  2) He didn’t just create us and then wait around to be born of a virgin. He was in fact, engaged with HIS creation!

Back to the Light

John 8:12 (CSB)
Jesus spoke to them again: “I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life.”

John 3:19-21 (CSB)
This is the judgment: The light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the light and avoids it, so that his deeds may not be exposed. But anyone who lives by the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be shown to be accomplished by God.”

For everyone who does evil hates the light and avoids it” … Afraid of the light; hates it; avoids it. Why? Because the Light exposes the sin and evil. Those in darkness don’t care for their guilt to be exposed. Therefore, fear that which can uncover their corruption.

1 John 1:5-7 (CSB)
This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light, and there is absolutely no darkness in him. If we say, “We have fellowship with him,” and yet we walk in darkness, we are lying and are not practicing the truth. If we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.

God IS light… absolutely no darkness in him! If we fellowship with him (admitted Christian’s) and yet walk in darkness, we lie!

So, it’s not only about those outside the church. It’s also about those who would put on the appearance of one of Christ’s followers but continue in their darkened ways.

Notice in this passage too; the very last part of it.

If we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.

Condition: If we walk in the light of God the Father, as he himself (God the Son) is in the light….

Result: We have fellowship with each other (those who walk in the light) … and … the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin!

Why am I pointing this out? Because there are so many in this day that wish to call themselves Christian who continue to walk in the darkness. So many that feel that just because they are a ‘good person’, go to church, and do the necessary Godly prerequisites that they have it nailed.  When in fact unless your sins are nailed to the cross with Jesus and you are walking in the light, this simply is not the case!

If you walk in darkness it is because you FEAR, the LIGHT!  You don’t want it uncovering your stony heart. You just want to fit in and you are no different than those that completely deny Jesus because if you’re not going to walk in the Light God provides then the blood of Christ is not washing away your sin.

You are every bit a lost as the next I forgiven soul!

Drawing to the Light

What can you about it?

Romans 10:9-10 (CSB)
If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. One believes with the heart, resulting in righteousness, and one confesses with the mouth, resulting in salvation.

It’s a commitment. No this isn’t a matter of saying the words and getting your ticket punched for heaven.  It is a commitment.  Jesus the creator; Jesus the Son of God; Jesus the perfect Lamb who gave himself to make us acceptable to God the Father. Jesus asks a few ‘simple’ things that involve a not so simple commitment. Rather, this commitment requires the repentance from our sins and a dedication of a life, your life.

What he requires is this:

Matthew 16:24 (CSB)
Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.

Simple instruction; lifetime commitment… And what becomes of us when we do this? We then by following Jesus find ourselves waking in the light, no longer fearing exposure as he has wiped us clean with His blood.

If we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.

When you embrace the Light of the World there is no darkness within you.  You’ll not fear the darkness either.

1 Peter 2:9-10 (CSB)
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his possession, so that you may proclaim the praises of the one who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

Don’t be afraid of the Light!

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