It was kind of a bottom-line thing for John–or rather, for God, who spoke through John by the Holy Spirit. The tell-tale, spiritual indicator as to when the heart of sin, rebellion, and disbelief is at play. Pretty simple to recognize, it seems.
“And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.” ~ Jesus
(John 3:19-20 ESV)
In our natural condition, we love the darkness. We love the place where we think we’re hidden and our thoughts and actions unknown. There’s freedom when we think no one’s looking. An absence of stress when we’ve convinced ourselves that what happens behind closed doors stays behind closed doors.
But Jesus’s entrance into our world reminds us that, with God, there are no closets to hide in. Light has come into the world.
Jeremiah, in my reading there this morning, declared to those who thought they could play in darkness back then, that our God, the LORD of hosts, is He who “tests the righteous” and “sees the heart and the mind” (Jer. 20:12). Jesus’ incarnation was the physical reminder of that unseen reality. God sees the heart and the mind. Light has come into the world.
Thinking this morning about how much we still prefer the darkness, the place where we somehow fool ourselves into believing things remain hidden. Thoughts, attitudes, actions–all of which we think that, if we keep them to ourselves, then they’re somehow okay. No harm, no foul, if they’re thought, nurtured, or done where, we think, no one hears or sees them.
But our God sees the heart and the mind. And our God has come into the world to remind us of that. And, if we’re honest with ourselves (sounds like a coming out of darkness thing), we know it’s better to live in the light than try to and run from it.
So what if we let the Light in? Like, let Him fully in?
And what if we were to come to the Light? As in, practicing transparency with every thought we think we think in secret, every attitude we harbor because no one knows, every action we take because we’ve kidded ourselves into believing that no one sees? Better? I’m thinking.
“But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.” ~ Jesus
(John 3:21 ESV)
We were created, and then, through the work of the cross, re-created, to be creatures of light. And, we know our thoughts, actions, and attitudes are consistent with the Light when we are willing to bring them into the light.
Oh, that the light of the word would reveal the darkness. That the Light of the world would give us freedom to walk in open, transparent places.
Because the Light has exposed the darkness. Has paid the price for what is done in the darkness. Has given us the Power to shed ourselves of the darkness. Has enabled us, through the life of the Light that lives in and through us, to do works in God which are pleasing to God.
Light has come into the world. Let us come into the Light.
By His grace. For His glory.