To say we are believers is to say that we accept the truth that we are sinners and that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. We are forgiven. We believe that Jesus died and will rise again. Salvation doesn’t just happen when we come to a belief in Jesus as our Savior and then stop there. Salvation and belief in Jesus is lived out daily as we live our lives striving to be the hands and feet of Jesus. The Christian faith is lived out when we are a light to a dark world (Matthew 5:16).
Old Testament Light
In the Old Testament, the Israelites were led out of bondage and slavery from Egypt. God called Moses to lead His people into a good and spacious land; a land flowing with milk and honey. The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey—the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt” (Exodus 3:7-10; ESV).
Through Moses, God led the people and directed them. God provided the light that led their way. The Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them along the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night. The pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night did not depart from before the people (Exodus 13:21-22; ESV).
If you know the story of Moses well, you know that he didn’t just jump up with great excitement when the Lord first called him. As a matter of fact, with much stuttering, he gave the Lord multiple excuses as to why he was not the man for this job. He didn’t understand why in the world the Lord called him to such a task and was pretty certain that God had found the wrong guy. Moses replied to God with 3 excuses…
- “Who am I…?” Exodus 3:11; NIV: But Moses said to God, “Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
- “But what if…” Exodus 4:1; NIV: Moses answered, “What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, ‘The LORD did not appear to you’?”
- And his final excuse gave reasons as to why he was not the man for the calling. Exodus 4:10; NIV: Moses said to the LORD, “O Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.”
The Lord so graciously had a wonderful “come back” to each of Moses’ excuses. He knew He had called the right man. He knew Moses was the one He wanted to lead the people from bondage into freedom.
New Testament Light
The moment Jesus died on the cross for the sins of the world, the veil was torn and now through the power of the Holy Spirit, God’s chosen people, the church, are the light of the world. There is no longer a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night to lead the way. When we accept Christ as our personal Lord and Savior, we become the light for Christ because of the Holy Spirit that dwells within us.
Matthew 27:51; NLT: At that moment the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. The earth shook, rocks split apart,
2 Corinthians 4:6; NLT: For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ.
The Eternal Light
An amazing incident is recorded in the book of Exodus about the light being the glory of the Lord. Exodus 40:34-35; NIV: Then the cloud covered the Tent of Meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. Moses could not enter the Tent of Meeting because the cloud had settled upon it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle.
For the believer, Jesus is the light of the world. As His children, we are to be His light on earth. You may have heard the phrase that we are to be “Jesus in skin.” There will come a day, when His glory will shine so brightly and we will all be united together for an eternity with the One true light. Revelation 21:23;ESV: And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb.
Until that day comes… we cannot stop being the light. We cannot quit doing our part. Is the Lord calling you? Is He equipping you to make a difference in the lives of those in bondage? If you are His disciple, your job is to be a light to the dark world. Do you feel like Moses did when God first called him? Are you making excuse after excuse as to why you can’t be the one called for the job He is calling you to? Just as the Lord called Moses, He is still calling us today. The Lord is calling His people (the church) to open our eyes, see the need, open our ears to hear the cry of the people and to use our hands and feet to make a difference. You are the light! is your light shining bright?