It does not follow, because light has come into the world, that it has fallen upon this or that man. He has his portion of the light that lighteth every man, but the revelation of God in Christ may not yet have reached him. A man might see and pass the Lord in a crowd, yet not be to blame like the Jews of Jerusalem for not knowing him. A man like Nathanael might have started and stopped at the merest glimpse of him, but all growing men are not yet like him without guile. Everyone who has not yet come to the light is not necessarily keeping his face turned away from it. We dare not say that this or that man would not have come to the light had he seen it; we do not know that he will not come to the light the moment he does see it. God gives every man time. There is a light that lightens sage and savage, but the glory of God in the face of Jesus may not have shined on this sage or that savage. The condemnation is of those who, having seen Jesus, refuse to come to him, or pretend to come to him but do not the things he says. They have all sorts of excuses at hand; but as soon as a man begins to make excuse, the time has come when he might be doing that from which he excuses himself. How many are there not who, believing there is something somewhere with the claim of light upon them, go on and on to get more from the darkness! This gives broad ground for the Lord to say, “Ye will not come unto me that ye might have life!”
Dark to Light
by Diane Adams
How many of us came to the light during the darkest time in our lives? Did we come because we wanted to, or was it because we had to do so? God uses the darkness to bring us to himself. When we see people who have sinned terribly, is that a chance for us to jump on the ego bandwagon and condemn another ‘bad’ person, or could it be that the darkness the sinner is encountering is the same as our own?
We live in a society obsessed with judgement. Not a day goes by that we don’t see another sinner dragged out into the public square, via the ‘news’ and social media to be exposed for his evil deeds. While the crowd roars its condemnation, the ego is tempted to say, “Thank God that I am not like that man. I can be comfortable because there are worse people around than I am.”
Inside of each one us there is light and darkness. The darkness can be useful, if we refuse to deny its existence. As more and more turn to split-second condemnations of whoever is accused today of bad behavior, it’s a good time to reflect on our own response to such things. When darkness overwhelms, a soul is being moved towards the light. Let’s not mix this up and use God’s work in another as an excuse to justify self-righteousness. Pull away from the judgement brigade and focus on the light we’ve been shown; pray for those just beginning that journey.