JESUS:THE LIGHT OF CHRISTMAS

Walking As Children of Light

John 12:35-36, 46; Eph 5:8

12/26/04

Jerry Collins

SCC

 

*               Should our walk demonstrate we are children of the light?

*               Why should we conduct ourselves as children of light?

*               What is the fruit of a life lived in Christs light?

 

On an evening in Kingston, Jamaica, a half-moon in the night sky caught my eye. Not only because it was shining brilliantly but also because it was the bottom half of the moon that was lit instead of the side of the moon. It looked strange at first. Apparently the closer you are to the equator, the more the rays of the sun are reflected on the moons surface this way. Of course, the moon is not the source of that light. The light comes from the sun, but the moon reflects that light and gives us a night light in the world to see by. We have been learning of Jesus, Gods light shining in the midst of a dark world. Jesus is the light of Christmas. He lights the way to God. Jesus was the light of men. And Jesus is the light that has come into the world. When we trust this light we have the privilege and responsibility of becoming sons of light, His disciples who continue to shine that light, reflecting its presence. Our behavior should correspond with our new position. We will learn that as children of light our walk must demonstrate that. In Ephesians 5:7-10, we have two commands that we must obey to live as the children of light.

1. DO NOT GET INVOLVED WITH UNBELIEVERS DISOBEDIENCE 7

If we are going to walk in light we must abstain from the evil practices of unbelievers. And he gives us two reasons why this is to be the case.

(1) Because Gods wrath is coming on the sons of disobedience vs 6. The word therefore (v. 7) makes an inference from what has just been said. In the light of the coming judgment (v 6) believers should not be deceived into thinking that it is harmless to become participants with unbelievers. Did you notice what kind of people these are (vs 3-6)? In conduct vs 3 & in speech vs 4 these are objects of Gods wrath. No sin will go unpunished. Since believers are in a new sphere of fellowship with the Lord, they are not to be fellow participants with sinners who are going in the opposite direction. Does not imply we should have no association with sinners but not to participate in their lifestyle so we can function as lights in this dark world.

(2) Because Christians are changed people 8a. In the past, we were formerly darkness. This darkness often signifies sin both its realm and power. So those in darkness must grope thru life without the light of Gods revelation 4:18. Their future just a continuation of increasing degrees of darkness. We were not formally in darkness but we were darkness itself. As such, we were held in sway by the power of sin and approved of others who practiced the same. But something drastic changed when we came to Christ. A contrast is highlighted with the word but now. We have come into the light. We know the revelation of God in Christ. Light refers to the character and revelation of God both in Christ. Open to the light of Gods revelation, we experience salvation which in turns now lights our lifes path! Light and darkness oppose each other. They cannot coexist. Notice that darkness has no qualifier with it as light does (light in the Lord). People in darkness are on their own or are there by their own doing, but not so with the light. The believer is light in the Lord. The source of that light is God and Christ. So we have been warned of Gods wrath coming on sons of disobedience and by inference we are urged not to become participants with them because we were formerly darkness but now are light in the Lord. With such privilege comes responsibility and we have a second command to follow.

2. WALK AS CHILDREN OF LIGHT

The command to walk is repeated again (4:1, 17; 5:2). The command denotes a habitual conduct for the children of light. The standard of how we must walk is as the children of light! The word children refers to a close relationship to a parent. Since God is light and we are children of God then we should walk as children of God or light. Like that moon in Jamaica, as lite reflects the glory of God, so should believers reflect His glory as imitators. But what are the qualities of the children of light? We learn in vs 9 what it means to walk as a child of light. The fruit of the light means the product or the result of an action. So it is the light that produces the fruit. That fruit is now listed here so that believers can measure their lives to see if their actions or works are a result of the light.

(1) Goodness which embraces generosity. The sphere in which the fruit of light consists is in all goodness. The word means a good thing, a benefit, welfare. In general terms the idea is of goodness or prosperity. It is the kind of good that brings a benefit with it for another. Not good for goodness sake.

(2) Righteous actions or works. This has in mind the right standing of the believer trusting Christ on the cross. Gods righteousness has been imputed to the believer and so his life is now to be characterized by this righteousness. It refers to this quality of life from which righteous actions spring.

(3) Right living as opposed to false living. This quality comes from God from which springs the actions of a truthful life. So the fruit or product of this light in our lives is goodness, righteousness and truthfulness. Light characteristically will expose that which is opposite of these fruits. It will not tolerate evil or falsify. Sinners, those in the darkness, are characterized by the opposite: namely, evil, wickedness and falsehood. This is what it means to walk as the children of light. Think opposite of way world thinks and you are much closer to way God thinks. This will be the result. The world fudges on all three of these because they are a detriment to getting ahead. But as children of light we are looking for only one persons confirmation in our lives. Life is much simpler if we only have one person to believe.

(4) Christ is the only one we please 10. Referring back to vs 8, it shows the manner of the walk of children of light. Our walk is in a way that is approved. The hope of a positive outcome, that is, approval. It has its eyes set on that approval. Of what? What is pleasing to the Lord. Christ is the Lord whom believers are to please. And we should do this in every aspect of our lives. That in every way we have the confidence that the Lord is pleased. The Word of God is our guide for this purpose. We cannot please the Lord without knowing and applying His Word to our lives. However, certain situations ae not directly addressed in Scripture. So in such cases, determined to please the Lord, we use the wisdom derived from the Bible, from that which we clearly know to be the will of God, to direct us in nonmoral areas where God has not spoken (like which person I marry; which career path to take, which house to buy).

(1) I should never conclude that it is better to have sinned. I jeopardize my walk with the Lord and invite the consequences of that sin to me.

(2) Since I am commanded to walk as a child of light means that I may not. Be aware of any relationship, situation or temptation that may hinder walking as a child of light.

(3) My focus must be on what is pleasing to the Lord not to others, myself, friends, family, colleagues.