Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” John 8:12
The Pharisees wanted to, or at least in their minds needed to find something against Jesus. Something that would make Him look bad in front of the crowds.
These religious leaders refused to believe anything the Lord said to them. Even if He would have told these Pharisees the sky was blue, they might have argued it was green.
When Jesus claimed that He was the light of the world they did not handle it well. They considered His statement invalid.
The Pharisees replied, “You are making those claims about yourself! Such testimony is not valid.” John 8:13
The Living Bible translated that verse a little more pointedly. It says The Pharisees replied, “You are boasting—and lying!”
The Lord never stood in defense of Himself because He didn’t need to. How many times throughout the gospels did the religious leaders try to back Jesus into a corner?
They, however, could never find a corner to back Him into. No matter how hard they tried to get the upper hand on Him they failed. Why? Because the Lord never backed down from them.
Jesus told them, “These claims are valid even though I make them about myself. For I know where I came from and where I am going, but you don’t know this about me. John 8:14
God Announced the Public Ministry of Jesus
I’m sure Mary along with Joseph shared with Jesus the facts surrounding what we call Christmas. God, however, publicly confirmed His ministry and identity when John baptized Him.
As Jesus came up out of the water, he saw the heavens splitting apart and the Holy Spirit descending on him like a dove. And a voice from heaven said, “You are my dearly loved Son, and you bring me great joy.” Mark 1:10-11
A few days after Jesus told the Pharisees He was the light of the world, He literally became light. Peter, James, and John witnessed it.
Six days later Jesus took Peter and the two brothers, James and John, and led them up a high mountain to be alone. As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed so that his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as light. Matthew 17:1-2
After a short meeting with Elijah and Moses, the three apostles heard the Father speak. For the second time, God the Father confirmed the Deity of His Son.
A bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy. Listen to him.” Matthew 17:5
Proclaimed a Second Time- Jesus, Light of the World
Jesus proclaimed to be the light of the world one other time. We find this occurrence in the ninth chapter of John. As He and His disciples walked along Jesus spotted a blind man.
Born blind, the man had never seen anything in his life. So the disciples inquisitively asked “Rabbi, why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parents’ sins?”
Isn’t that just like us, always looking for the reason why! Sometimes if we can’t find one we’ll make one up. In times like this blind man, the reasoning goes beyond our comprehension.
“It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,” Jesus answered. “This happened so the power of God could be seen in him. John 9:3
Of course, the Lord healed the man but He continued with an important lesson. He pointed to the contrast between light and darkness and the urgency of completing the task before us.
We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the one who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work. Then Jesus said, while I am here in the world, I am the light of the world.” John 9:4-5
While He was in this world Jesus was the light of the world. Since He has ascended into heaven we are now the light of the world.
Jesus said, “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. Matthew 5:14
Does Your Light Shine in the World?
He went on to say that no one lights a lamp and then hides it. Instead, they place a lamp on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. So how do we make our lights shine?
In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father. Matthew 5:16
Let’s illustrate this by referring to the sun and the moon. When the light from the sun illuminates the earth, just like Jesus darkness vanishes. We on the other hand shine in a world of darkness.
The moon has no light of its own, it can only reflect light from the sun. Sometimes it reflects just a sliver of light. Other times it reflects so much light it casts shadows in the darkness.
Does your life reflect the light of Jesus enough so the world takes notice? The Lord said that comes by the good deeds you do for the kingdom of heaven.
Back to our original story, the Pharisees walked around in darkness without even realizing it. That’s why when confronting Jesus, His light shined brightly into their sinful world.
We don’t expose the sins of others, but the light that shines through us does. So, let the light of Jesus shine out into the dark world around you.
Lord, we pray that our lives will reflect the light of Jesus to shine into the dark world around us.
Check out these related posts about light.