Jesus was the master of object lessons. He was able to take any situation He was in and turn it into a lesson, easy enough for anyone to understand. In this Friday Series study, He used a festival to teach about who He was.
Let’s Look at John 8:12.
Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
This passage is believed to follow John 7:52. It happens when the Feast of Tabernacles was celebrated. This feast was to celebrate God’s provision during the time that the Jews were wandering in the wilderness. During the Feast at night, lamps would be lit. There would be celebrating under these lights, which signified how God led the Israelites by fire at night in the wilderness. At this time, Jesus taught how He was the light of the world. The people listening at that moment could correlate this with God’s provision in the wilderness, leading the Israelites by fire and cloud.
Light can resonate in so many ways and have profound depth to those listening. Light is in contrast to darkness. Light is good, pure, holy and revealing. Darkness often means evil, wrongdoing, or shady. Light cuts through the darkness and shows the way ahead. Light also brings thoughts about redemption and salvation. Jesus is all those things.
In the second part of His statement, Jesus gives hope to those who follow Him. Those who follow will not be left in the dark; light shall be given to them. Again, the provision in the wilderness is brought to our minds. A pillar of fire leading the large group of Israelites through the darkness is our Old Testament image. God always provides. It might be in the way we would want provision, but He does provide.
My husband loves survival shows, especially if they are set in Alaska. On those shows, when night falls, the survivalist has to be sure he has fire. The fire provides warmth, light, and protection. How true is that of Jesus! He gives us the warmth and security of salvation. He provides light to see the right way to go, as well as protection from the enemy.
Let’s look at one more passage, John 1:4-5.
In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
At the beginning of his gospel, Jesus is described. Jesus gives life that is light. Darkness was defeated by His light.
Through this simple object lesson, Jesus was able to teach people about who He was. These people were confronted by truth. Jesus also confronts us with the truth and requires a decision. Will you accept the light of Jesus or remain in the darkness?