Examples Described – Light (2)

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See full series: lights-in-a-dark-world-2019

Examples Described – Light (2)

Sermon by  Thomas Thornhill Jr

Passage: Matthew 5:14-16



Sunday, February 10, 2019 am                            

The Power of Example (4)
You are the Light of the world (2)

 We have been studying descriptions of being examples in God’s word. Last week we began to examine the description of light.   We talked about how God is light and the originator of light.   We then talked about Jesus as the light of the world.   In both of these we find the light we are to be shining forth.   Today, we want to look a little closer at how we are to be lights in this dark world.

I.  We are the light of the world –

  1. More than any other illustration of our example, we are described as lights.
  2. Matthew 5:14-16, Jesus challenges us to be lights in this world.   Note: Jesus used the same metaphor He applied to Himself.   While in a different way, we are the light – in that we see the relationship between the two.
    Philippians 2:15 – we are the light of world.
    The point being, we are to be examples by letting our light shine.
  3. The gospel, a source of light – some many things could be said about the word of God.   From a perspective of light, it reveals God and Jesus to us.   How do know God is the creator of light?   How do know Jesus is the Light of the world we need?   How do we know how to come in contact with that light?   His word, reveals these things to us.   Consider the following passages:
    1. 2 Corinthians 4:3-6 – This text speaks of “the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ” ought to shine on us. Even though it is hidden from many by “the god of this age.”
    2. Acts 13:46-48 – Paul in Antioch (of Pisidia) on his 1st journey is teaching the whole city. He makes reference to being “a light to the Gentiles, That you should be for salvation to the ends of the earth.
    3. 2 Peter 1:19 – we heed the word as a light that shines in a dark place.
    4. 1 Timothy 1:11 speaks of the glorious gospel – a term often associated with the light of God.
  4. 1 John 1:5-9 – we are to be walking in the light. God is light (whom we are to be imitating).
  5. Ephesians 5:8-9 – we are to walk as children of light
  6. 1 Thessalonians 5:5-6 – you are sons of light and sons of the day.
  7. We are called upon to abide in the light – 1 John 2:8-11

II.  Qualities of light

  1. Like salt, light possesses many qualities that are demonstrated as we let our lights shine.
  2. Light sustains life – we need the light of the sun to survive as the world.
    • Light is a gift from God – Matthew 5:45 – He makes His sun shine…
      Spiritually, the light of Christ gives us life, it leads us to salvation
    • John 1:4 – said of Jesus, the life was the light of men.
    • Psalm 27:1 – The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?
    • 1 Peter 2:9 – we are a chosen generation…we proclaim His praises – we are called out of darkness into His marvelous light.  The whole of this is we are saved (delivered from darkness) and we proclaim that (via example and teaching) to others.
  3. Light illuminates – physically, light reveals what is around you.
    • Exodus 13:21-22 – in the wilderness, God provided light for the Israelites in the form of a cloud over them at night.
    • Psalm 119:105 – a light to my path and a lamp to my feet.   His word, as a light, gives us direction.   Just as the lights of our vehicle illuminates what is directly in front of us, it can get us where we need to go.
      Spiritually, the gospel is the light – it reveals truth.   It gives us understanding (helps us to see).     We need to see what to do, where to go, and how to do what we should.
      And as we are walking in the light, we are illuminating this gospel to others. Matthew 5:16 – let your light SO SHINE…
  4. Light exposes darkness – both physically and spiritually.   This is one of the ways, light illuminates.
    Recall Jesus in John 3:18-21 – Jesus as He elaborates on the light that has come into the world, He notes that men loved darkness and hated the light lest their deeds be exposed.
    There is a reason, why we put up lights for security reasons.   It can expose bad behavior and drive away the ungodly element.
    1 Corinthians 4:5 – when the Lord returns, He will bring to light the hidden things of darkness and expose the counsels of the heart.
    Ephesians 5:11-13- after calling for us to walk as children of light (example), we will be exposing darkness.   At times, this may make those in darkness uncomfortable, but we must do it any ways.
  5. Light provides security – we alluded to this in our last point (exposing darkness).   Consider further Romans 13:12 – we are to put on the armor of light.
  6. Light has healing properties – among the health benefits of natural light are increased vitamin D, it helps with depression and sleep, as well as other benefits.   Some even use light as part of treatment for certain ailments.
    • Spiritually, light can give us “healing.”   Malachi 4:2, But to you who fear My name The Sun of Righteousness shall arise With healing in His wings; And you shall go out And grow fat like stall-fed calves.
    • Matthew 9:1-8, where Jesus heals a paralytic, but He also forgives his sins. The Light of the world forgives sins.
    • 1 John 1:7 – we walk in the light, and the blood of Jesus cleanses us.
    • Isaiah 53:5, speaking of our Savior’s death we read, “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.”
    • Revelation 22:1-5, in the heavenly Jerusalem, where the Lord God gives light, we also find the tree of life providing healing of the nations.
    • Consider how the light of the gospel can give us hope as we face troubles in this life.   And of course, the light of the gospel leads us to forgiveness, or the healing of the sin-sick soul.
    • Can we, by letting our light shine, bring healing to others?
  7. Light provides warmth – typically, light (including the sun) provides warmth.
    While there might not be a specific verse that ties light to warmth, we know they go hand in hand. As Christians, we have emphasized the need for a warm disposition.   We need to be bringing spiritual warmth into this cold and dark world. We do this with godly attitudes.
    Consider Philippians 2:14-15 – do all things without complaining and disputing, be blameless and harmless – AND shine as lights.
  8. Light is dependable – Genesis 8:21-22 – God declared to Noah that the sun would rise, etc. WE can count the sun rising and setting, as it is appointed.
    James 1:17 – speaks of the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.
    One of the ways we let our light shine is by being dependable.   We need to be consistent and men and women of integrity.     Our word ought to mean something.   Matthew 5:37- But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.
  9. Light attracts – think of a spot light promoting some event, or a well-lit sign to a business, or some insect attracted to the light.   When our light is shining brightly, it will attract others. Consider our text in Matthew 5:16 – let your light so shine…

These are some of the qualities associated with light, and they apply to our example as the light of the world.   As we begin a study of what all is involved in being godly examples, let us resolve to manifest the qualities of our Lord.   Let us strive to be the light of the world, as manifested by the Light of the world, who created the light FOR the world.   How is your light shining?