Appendix VII: LIGHT OF LIFE
Scripture defines God as the Eternal Spirit, the One who existed before time began and will exist after time passes. God is the Spirit Being that created this vast time, space, and matter universe that we are born into, live in, and in many ways are confined to.
God is the Eternal One who has no beginning or ending. He is ever-present, all-powerful, always mindful, and cannot be seen by natural eyes (omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient, and invisible).
How can anyone relate to such an Entity? Scripture helps us relate to God by identifying an intricate part of His essence as Light.
God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness (1 John 1:5).
To understand God as Light, it is helpful to consider the natural sun. The sun creates and provides light that allows our natural eye to see and observe many of the features of the natural realm. Although we cannot see into the sun or fully comprehend its essence, we know it exists because we observe its expressive light.
Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light (Genesis 1:5).
The light in the creation account was not the natural sun and moon, which are not mentioned until the fourth creative cycle in verses 14-19. As a first creative action, God turned on the light of illumination, so that understanding could be achieved. God made a distinction between insightful light and its lack: dark obscurity.
Insightful light originates with God and flows from Him as revealing insight. Revealing light overcomes the darkness in any situation or circumstance. Jesus said the light of God’s presence eventually reveals all that is secret, hidden, and unknown.
For there is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known (Matthew 10:26).
Since God is Light and He shares His revealing light, all enlightenment originates and comes from Him. Any other light source is really just a reflection of the light that is God—much like the light of the moon is merely a reflection of the light of the sun.
Like the natural sun, no one can fully comprehend the essence of God. We can, however, begin to understand and relate to Him through His expressions. Two thousand years ago God shared a unique expression of His Light in the life of Jesus Christ.
In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men (John 1:4).
For God…is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ (2 Corinthians 4:6-7).
There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man (John 1:9).
Jesus demonstrated what the image and likeness of God is like.
I am the Light of the world. He who follows Me…will have [experience] the Light of life (John 8:12).
We are all birthed into this time and space realm so we can grow and develop as children of God. Our heavenly Father wants each one of us to receive and partake of His light so we learn to be images and likenesses (reflections and resemblances) of His heart’s character, attitude, and personality (CAP).
God sent Jesus into the earth so we could better comprehend and relate to Him as the Light of our life. Jesus revealed the insight that God loves us and forgives us. He desires to be our guiding ligh and teach us how to live and mature as His children.
The Old Testament sheds some light on God’s intention for our life. A short list of the graphic ways people in the Old Testament experienced God is found in chapter 11 of the book of Hebrews.
The New Testament illustrates the life and words of Jesus Christ and his disciples. We are all intended to receive the Light of Life and learn to live godly lives.
God…called us with a holy calling…according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity…who…brought life and immortality to light through the gospel (2 Timothy 1:9-10).
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory… (2 Corinthians 3:18).
We know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life (1 John 5:20).
Since we all have spirit as part of our makeup, we are all equipped with spiritual senses that enable us to see, hear, touch, taste, and even smell the presence of God among us. The spiritual side of our five senses enables us to observe what God is saying and doing.
But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil (Hebrews 5:14).
When we observe the life of Jesus and partake of the fellowship of the Father that he exampled, we really begin to understand and experience God as the Light of our life. Everyone has the capacity to receive and absorb of God’s light-giving life. Greater depths of light come as we experience the fellowship of His presence. We are all designed to be reflective resemblances of God and conveyers of His light.
Those who have insight will shine brightly like the brightness of the expanse of heaven, and those who lead the many to righteousness, like the stars (Daniel 12:3).
The spirit of life in us equips each person to become reflective resemblances (image and likeness) of our heavenly Father. As we allow the Light of life to penetrate our soul consciousness (the activity of our mind, will and emotion), we are progressively transformed into the desire of God’s heart, into disciplined children of God who reflect and resemble His heart CAP.
Now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light…all things become visible when they are exposed by the light. For this reason it says, “Awake, sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you” (Ephesians 5:8, 13-14).
You are the light of the world…Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father (Matthew 5:14, 16).
The path of the righteous is like the light of dawn that shines brighter and brighter (Proverbs 4:18 ).
Everyone perceives in some degree that God really does exist, even those who openly deny Him. Just a slight awareness of His reality positions us to receive more insightful light. We want to seek to experience the presence of God and draw from the primary source of light, the Light of our life.
Jesus Christ is the first fully true-to-the-design son of God. He clearly demonstrated and taught that we, as offspring submitted to Father’s tutoring, can hear and observe what God is saying and doing. Are we listening?
The Light of God becomes more visible in the culture of Christ, where God dwells among us, with us, and in our midst.
Will of God Directs Us
A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large, empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.
The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.
The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous, “Yes.”
The professor then produced two Cokes from under the table and poured the entire contents of both into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed. “Now,” said the professor as the laughter subsided, “I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life.
“The golf balls are the important things—your family, your children, your health, your friends, and your favorite passions—and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house, and your car. The sand is everything else—the small stuff.
“If you put the sand into the jar first,” he continued, “there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Spend time with your children. Spend time with your parents. Visit with grandparents. Take your spouse out to dinner. Take care of the golf balls first—the big things that really matter.
“Set your priorities. The rest is just sand. One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the Cokes represented. The professor smiled and said, “I’m glad you asked. The Cokes just show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room for a couple of Cokes with a friend.”
And those times with friends—our fellowship with others—are the things that fill out our life and complete it like nothing else can. They give us the place wherein we can share with one another the godly qualities and choices we are learning from Him.
“The Lord never hides His will from us. In time, as you obey the call first to follow, your destiny will unfold before you. The difficulty will lie in keeping other concerns from diverting your attention.” —Charles R. Swindoll
Spoken and Revealed
When God fused His Spirit into the first human body, spirit became the life-giving component in what Adam was as a human being (body, soul, and spirit). As offspring of the first couple, we all receive and partake of similar physical bodies and the same life-giving spirit.
Because we all have a spirit that connects us to the heavenly realm, each of us can hear the promptings of God’s Spirit and come to understand His will for us. When we include a relational fellowship with God as one of our most important priorities, we are able to experience His reigning influence in our lives and in essence, partake of the kingdom of God.
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