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Don't Turn Off That Light!

Don’t Turn Off That Light!

       In my home, I have a designation beyond that of husband, father, bread-winner, or head of household. That designation is: “The light police”. I bear this title in part, because I tend to turn off lights anytime someone is not in the room at the moment. Our electric bill arrives in the mailbox on a regular interval, and of late, it seems to have become more expensive each month.       My wife, constantly reminds me that she is “going right back into that room”, so: “Don’t turn off that light!”  
       However, there is another light which should never be extinguished. Our Lord reminded His disciples one of His earthly designations in John 9:5. He said: As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. We also read in John 3:19-21 that Jesus informed Nicodemus why some want this light to be diminished, and why others welcome it and its source.   And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. 21 But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.
        In Matthew 5:14-16, near the front part of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught His disciples and told them they were to continue to “shine the light”, and to do so to the glory of God.   Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.   Many of these who followed Jesus while He was on the earth, would later be blessed to hear the gospel and have opportunity to obey it and be added to the kingdom. Afterward they could do their part to “shine” for the cause of Christ.  
       Just as the moon reflects the light of the sun, Christians are to reflect the light of the Son of God to the glory of God.   This is done in the preaching of Christ as the Spirit had Paul write in 2Corinthians 4:5-6.   For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake. 6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.   In fact, in the verses prior to this, the brethren in that congregation were reminded that many still could not see because they allow the “god of this world” – the devil, to deceive and blind them. But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. (2Corinthians 4:3-4).  
       The beloved apostle, in 1John 1:5-7, was directed by the Spirit to remind the Christians of that day what the apostles had heard directly from the Savior while He was physically among them. This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.  To “walk in the light” is to live in full adherence to the gospel of Christ as was preached by the apostles and is still preached today by faithful proclaimers of God’s Holy Word.  
       You don’t have to take my word for this as God Himself, through the Holy   Spirit in Acts 13:46-49, had the physician Luke record the message Paul was provided as he responded to Jews who rejected God’s Word and would rather remain in darkness. Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. 47 For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth. 48 And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. 49 And the word of the Lord was published throughout all the region. These Gentiles gladly heard the Word (saw the light), and were obedient to the gospel, and in so doing became Christians.
       Colossians 1:13 shows that when one has been baptized into Christ in obeying the gospel, they have been cleansed by the blood of Christ, and need not be any longer in the dark. Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:  In addition to showing that Christians are in the light, 1Peter 2:9 provides an inspired list of spiritual designations of those who have obeyed the gospel and have become the children of God. But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
       Don’t Turn Off That Light! Don’t shun the gospel!   Obey it today before it is eternally too late, and remain faithful to God.    

Dennis Strickland – Mooresville church of Christ

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