When I was a teenager, I heard preachers saying this: “Jesus is the light of the world. So don’t think for one moment that you can do things behind His back. His light will expose all the bad things that you have done!” So I was afraid to come near God, fearing that His glorious light would show up my faults, weaknesses and shame.
But is this what “the light of the world” does?
The truth is found in the context of the verse. Jesus declared that He was the light of the world right after He had told the woman caught in the act of adultery, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”
When she said, “No one, Lord,” He said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” Then, the Bible tells us that “Jesus spoke to them again, saying, ‘I am the light of the world…’” (John 8:10–12).
How wonderful it is to know that when Jesus said, “I am the light of the world,” His light was not to show up the woman’s sin because He had just told her that He did not condemn her.
This tells us that we don’t have to be fearful when we come into God’s presence. He is not there waiting to punish us for our mistakes and failures. His light is not for exposing our sins and shame, or for condemning us. No, His glorious light is for showing us how perfectly His Son’s blood has washed away our sins! That is why Jesus could tell the woman that He did not condemn her—because He would be condemned for her sin as well as ours at the cross.
Beloved, Jesus’ light unveils the truth that our sins have been completely removed. It reveals how perfect and spotless we are because of Christ’s perfect work at the cross. When you know this, you can go boldly into God’s presence, knowing that you have the light of life that gives you grace and hope!
© Copyright Joseph Prince, 2008–2020
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