The Scarlet Thread
The Empty Throne: Part 2
We all enjoy winners. Many of you will recall who won the last World Series... that's right my team the NY Yankees. But how many remember the team who lost the Super Bowl four times in a row... hint - my team - no one remembers... no one except maybe a Buffalo Bill's fan like me! Winning is something in our DNA that everyone in the world loves to celebrate. Winners are applauded, held in high esteem and emulated and paraded down Main Street USA. Today we have the awesome opportunity to look at the ultimate victor, who has never lost not even once! Now that's a record to celebrate!
The second message in the series on John is called "Light Wins". Yes, "Light Wins" every time!
Let's see what "The Scarlet Thread" has to say about the Triumphant Light.
"In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." John 1:4,5
God Idea: Light means - everything you need to know about life is found in Jesus!
(Each week the God Idea - is the overriding principle for the message.)
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. John 8:12
Jesus quickly identified Himself as the light of the world. He did so during a feast when all of Jerusalem was illuminated to celebrate a feast. The white walls of Jerusalem would reflect this light to make this the most brilliant night of the year. In the midst of this setting Jesus declares, "I am the light of the world."
It would have been a huge statement to declare Himself the light of Jerusalem but what He said was of even greater significance. By stating "I am" He was declaring Himself to be God. Those listening would have immediately recognized this fact which would infuriate the religious leaders of the day.
To say He was the light of the world was to declare that He would bring illumination to the minds and hearts of mankind. He was essentially proclaiming, "Light Wins".
Four properties of light come quickly to mind.
1. Light creates life.
(Jesus as "The Light" will bring new life to mankind - the dead in spirit will be born again to new life.)
2. Light brings revelation. Ps. 119:105
(Jesus as "The Light" will reveal the deep secrets of man's heart.)
3. Light reveals hope.
(Jesus as "The Light" in the darkness is a rescuer reaching out with hope to those in darkness.)
4. Light opens perspective.
(Jesus as "The Light" opens our minds are hearts to God's perspective.)
"Light Wins" every time. Turn off all the lights, turn on just one... who wins - "The Light Wins". Jesus as the Light always wins - Even the Grave Lost! “and the darkness has not overcome it”.
Two meanings are served in the phrase, "darkness has not overcome it"...
1. The darkness cannot “Overpower” light! (Never)
2. The darkness cannot “Comprehend” light! (It is impossible for it to understand the light.)
Both meanings are excellent interpretations of this phrase.
He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him
This begs the question: ‘If light wins, why do people stay in darkness?”
I've come up with four over-riding reasons:
1. To live and stay in “Darkness” is a choice! This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. John 3:19, 20
2. Darkness causes a loss of purpose and direction! Then Jesus told them, "You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. The man who walks in the dark does not know where he is going . John 12:35
3. Darkness creates confusion. “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” 4
4. Darkness is ruled by Satan. “to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God…” Acts 26:18a
MAKE THE CHOICE: Choose light! Go out in the light!
The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature. Rom. 13:12-14
Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God. John 1:10-13