The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. – Jn. 1:14 NIV
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The disciple John was recorded by Bible scholars and historians as the favourite of Jesus Christ. Should this be true, then there is no obvious reason for this special attention he received from Jesus Christ but events such as the handing over of his mother which scholars claim was to John tend to support this view – Jn. 19:26-27.
This was the same disciple who like three others gave an account of the coming of Christ to the world, the outstanding events that marked out the ministry of Jesus and of course his departure with a promise to return to judge the world and rapture his chosen ones. John opens his account of all these events with the story of Jesus Christ who was the Word seated with the Almighty God in the beginning but incarnated and dwelt with men on earth – Jn. 1:1-3; 14. John noted that in Jesus Christ was a new life which had the following characteristics;
1. It was a life that was the light of men – Jn. 1:4b.
2. The light shines ever so bright in darkness – Jn. 1:5a.
3. It was impossible for darkness to comprehend the light – Jn. 1:5b.
The disciple John testifies further in the scripture that is the foundation of today’s devotional that he witnessed the glory of this incarnated life who is the Son of God and who turned out to be the light of men adding that he was full of grace and truth – Jn. 1:14.
All the above is the testimony of someone who lived and dined with him for a minimum of three and half years. Just like Abraham said to the rich man, he that does not believe the testimony of the living will not believe the testimony of even anyone that claims to come from the land of the dead – Lk. 16:29-31. Not believing however will not in any way change the truth of his coming but like Jesus Christ said to Thomas, blessed are those who did not see but believed – Jn. 20:29.
This does not however apply to the Christian as he/she is assumed to have believed to be called a Christian. Such must have believed that he came in flesh, was crucified, died, rose and ascended to heaven and that he will be returning very soon to take his chosen ones to the place he has prepared for them – Jn. 14:1-4. Such is expected to already possess the right to operate as the son of the most high on this earth – Jn. 1:12. In this position;
1. Such possesses a new life. The Apostle Paul says all those who are in Christ live a new life as the records of the events of the old are wiped off – 2Cor. 5:17. This new life is the one that John describes as the light of man. Without this new life, man will remain in darkness living a life associated with such environment. Jesus Christ said that those who walk in light do not stumble as they are able to see clearly – Jn. 11:9-10. The one who claims to be a Christian has nothing to do with darkness as he/she is living and is surrounded by a mobile light. A light that goes everywhere with him/her such that entrance into an environment of darkness will immediately transform such an environment into that of light. There is simply no way that the one who has this light can experience darkness.
2. Any negative experience that is proven to be the effect of the activity of the agents of darkness is an immediate indicator that such a person is not or is no longer in Jesus Christ. This is because the testimony of John the disciple reveals that this particular light shines very well in darkness. The shining of this light pushes the border of light and darkness far away from the individual because of its intensity. It is not a light whose intensity is comparable to that of a matchstick light, a candlelight, torchlight or even moonlight but a light whose intensity is greater than that of even sunlight. The spiritual life of the one who is living in this new light will no longer experience any influence of darkness because darkness moves far away from such.
3. Above all is the fact that no strategy of the devil can bring darkness into the life of one that has this life. This is because they are never able to overcome its intensity. The King James version of the bible says darkness cannot even understand it and it is impossible to overcome what is not even understood.
This does not in any way imply that the one who has this new life cannot lose it as straying from the decision to worship the Almighty God exclusively and accepting His son Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior will make the one who had it before lose it instantly. Therein lies the danger of this new life as its departure is hardly noticed until there is the need to deploy it. The experience of Samson (Judges 16:1-20) and to some extent, King Saul (1Sam. 28:6) is relevant in this instance.
This does not however mean that those who are enjoying this huge advantage are holy and are able to sustain their standard of living a holy life. They are not in any way sinless or perfect but they are still able to live in this life that brings light into their lives. This is because, as John put it in today’s scripture, living a life in Jesus Christ is living a life in Grace and Truth. That is what Jesus Christ is full of.
Jesus Christ presented himself to those who desire to come to God in three words; Way, Truth and Life – Jn. 14:6. In Jesus Christ lies the standard for Truth about God and all that he stands for. The one who is in Christ can easily assess his/her state using him as the standard. It is very easy for the Christian to see his/her deficits when such is in Christ and quickly be sober for them. Christ is the perfection of God presented as man. He will never lead you astray to do anything against the Will of his father as he is the father’s standard for men. However, if despite all his guidance, the one who is in him still transgresses, such does not lose the advantages earlier stated, not because God suddenly becomes tolerant of sin but because there is a grace that is available for such. This grace is able to confer the status of a righteous person on the sinner as an inheritance – Rom. 3:21-26. Following the order in which John puts both, the Grace precedes the one who is living in this new life of light such that it covers every transgression that the Truth of God reveals in man and is able to present the one living this new life in the light of a righteous person. It is the Grace that is seen and not the transgression as revealed by the Truth.
So as a Christian, you are expected to enjoy all the above advantages of living the new life, not because you stopped transgressing from the day you decided on the new life but because Grace precedes all your activities and gives the impression of a perfect person – Psa. 32:1. As much as this is not a license to continue in sin in expectation that the Grace will continue (Rom. 6:1-2), it is an experience that every Christian should have as a consequence of genuinely accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior. Absence of this is a very grave signal that something has gone wrong and requires prompt attention is required to rectify the error before things become late. Your personal acts of righteousness can never do it as the Prophet Isaiah describes such acts as filthy rags – Isa. 64:4-9. Do not rely on your ability to achieve righteousness through your personal act as it will never be sufficient. Live the new life of Grace and Truth. May the Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ continue to abide on us all in Jesus name. Amen.