Matthew 5:14 says Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. That was the key verse of our 2013 Camp Meeting, Higher Ground. Matthew 5:16 goes on to say, Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
We sing, this little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine. Shine all over Buffalo, I’m gonna let it shine. Won’t let Satan blow it out, I’m gonna let it shine.
How bright are we?
Sometimes my light is shining, other times it is under a bushel. Sometimes it seems my light is one big string of bright Christmas nights yet the smallest burned out bulb trips the whole set. At times it is so bright it blinds everyone I come in contact with. Other times it dims like a snuffed out candle. I seem to shine brightest at church or when I am alone or preaching on the street. I seem to shine the weakest when I’m around lost family, or at work too busy or too focused or too afraid to open my mouth. Other times things seem so dark, I might be projecting some light but I can’t see any.
I was signing the other day in between street preaching, “the whole world was lost in the darkness of sin, the light of the world is Jesus. Come to the light, it dawned upon me! Once I was blind, but now I can see, the light of the world is JESUS!”
Ye are the vine. HE is the branches. YE are the light of the world. You are the light bulb and he is the power source.
John 8:12 says Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. There is no need for the sun, in heaven we’re told, the light of the world is Jesus, continues the song. Yet mankind seems to love the dark like a bunch of light despising cockroaches. John 3:19 says And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. We have offended a holy God by our actions, and the light makes us tend to run FROM God. Instead of to God.
Oh, lost man, fight that tendency. Yes God hates your sin, but that is part of God’s holy nature. He must punish sin wherever it is found because he is JUST. A good judge faithfully upholds the laws and dishes out adequate punishment for the crimes. It is the unjust judge that gives murderers 2 months probation and rapists the slap on the wrist. Lust is adultery and hatred is murder. You need to be saved from God’s wrath. Can you see you are guilty when you would have to stand before God? Now I can offer you the cure, once you know you are sick. We have heard the joyful sound, JESUS SAVES, JESUS SAVES! Come to Jesus, weary sinner, he from sin can set you free. Look to Jesus Christ as Saviour, he who died on Calvary! Grace is flowing like a river, all who come will be supplied. Grace is moving like a fountain, none have yet to be denied. So goes the Ron Hamilton song. Look and live, my brother, live! Look to Jesus now and live! I have a message from the Lord, Alleluia, that only that you look and live. Isaiah 45:22 says Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.
My blog post was to encourage the saved as well. A message preached at our meeting described the Christian walk as one headed up a mountain. Picture a snow capped mountain with a ring of clouds around the half way point. We start climbing and run into the patch of clouds about half way up. It gets confusing and instead of continuing to climb, we tend to keep going in circles. Or head back down below the clouds.
It is a lot like LOT’s wife. The Bible says REMEMBER LOT’S WIFE. She was almost to freedom, she almost had her foot reach the valley of Zoar and there she turned back. It wasn’t when she had taken the first step out of Sodom. It wasn’t at the half way point. It was just when she almost had made it to freedom. Maybe she relaxed and forgot she was told to not look back. She perhaps wanted to get one more memory. She maybe wanted to see the fireworks display. Whatever the reason, that is a good principle to remember. Often, just when you are the brink of a breaking point, or a turning point, or an explanation point in your life, that is when the temptation comes to return or quit or give in to something you know God doesn’t want for you.
I think God is about to do something in my life. Usually in the times in my life I get stuck in the clouds, I have panicked. It seems in those cloudy days the devil launches every assault at me he can muster. Just before I get past the clouds, hell seems to open up and every demon seems to come out and make you regret wanting to climb to higher ground. All havoc will break out in the marriage like a sudden case of hives. Finances take a tumble. Things break down. The kids will all get sick suddenly. You won’t know where it started, you won’t know where it is going, but that is the time to hang on. Unless Jesus calls you out, stay in the boat until the storm passes by.
This evening and even tonight I saw some real battles and while I am not yet at the top, nor have I finished my course, in my heart I know I experienced some victory. I am weak but he is strong. I know some of my weaknesses and I know I have some blind spots too. Pray I make it to the top.
A principal I heard is new levels, new devils. You would think that as you climb and the air thins that you would be alone. Oh, you will be alone. Alone with your dreams a lot of the times. Alone from those who don’t understand. Alone from the world who thinks you are crazy and the church even who can think you are a nut. Yet until you get past the clouds, you will find the enemy prowling and seeking whom he may devour. We start up the mountain and hit the fog half way up and go in circles. The second time around the path the The devil will try and lure us in when we least expect it. He is like that lion and he is on the scent. If we go back to that same path, we may find him there following our scent. He is on our tail, on that trail. Yet if we keep climbing instead of ending up back where we left our scent, we will be better off.
Go beyond the clouds. Hebrews 12:2 says, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. I think of another song, Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in his wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of his glory and grace.
Micah 7:8 says Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a light unto me. Ye are that light. Keep climbing fixing your eyes on him, and stay in the word. It is a light unto our path and we merely need to reflect the light.
It is harder to reflect it when we wander in darkness.
Go beyond the clouds. Do you want that mountain? I know I do.