I AM: THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
One of the great things about the Upper Cumberland of Tennessee is that it does not take long to get
out of the city and into the country side. Recently, our college and young adult class took advantage of
the nature around Cookeville and went camping on a nearby farm. The night of the campout the sky lit
up in a brilliant array of purples, blues, and pinks just as the Sun disappeared from view. To say it was
beautiful does not really do justice, the light in the sky that dusk was amazing.
Light is a wonderful thing, it has a way of captivating the imagination. I think that is one of the reasons
Jesus says in John chapter 8 he is “the light of the world.” As a Jew, Jesus was well aware of the
connection in Judaism between the Living God and Light. When Moses led the children of Israel out
of Egypt and into the wilderness, God provided light from a pillar of fire to guide the people. Later,
the great Feast of Tabernacles would also be called the Feast of Lights because of the multicolored
lights that shone throughout the tents. There are other examples, but you get the point – Light is an
important Old Testament image.
So, when Jesus declared himself to be “the Light of the World” he was making clear he was the
fulfillment of the symbolic Old Testament lights. Where other lights brighten partially, Jesus is the
complete light. His light illuminates the Old Testament, it shines into the darkness of the world, and
it brightens up our personal emptiness. I love the lesser sky lights of the Upper Cumberland, but even
more I love the living light, Jesus Christ. This week I hope you live in the Light of Jesus’ love for you.