Summary: This sermon examines the meaning of the concept "God Is Light."
We are going to look at one of the simplest passages in the Bible. It is only three words. Even though it is only three words it is one of the most profound passages in the Bible. Turn to I John 1:5.
“This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.” (I John 1:5 NKJV) We read the whole verse but I want to concentrate on three words, “God is love.” That phrase is profound. In fact, two of the simplest and yet most profound verses in the Bible are found in I John. Chapter 1 verse 5 is one of those passages. The other is chapter 4 verse 8, “God is love.” Profound concepts do not have to be long and cumbersome.
“God is light!“ We need light just like we need God. Do you realize there is a physical disorder caused my lack of light? It is called Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.). It is caused by a lack of exposure to sunlight, which in turn alters a person’s brain chemistry. During the fall and winter months when the hours of daylight are shorter, less light passes through the eyes which then inhibits the release of an important brain chemical, serotonin. When serotonin is not released in sufficient quantities, symptoms of depression may occur. Melatonin, another important brain chemical which regulates our sleep cycle, is released in greater quantities, adding to the depressive state. How is Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.) treated? The standard treatment for this disorder is “light” therapy. In fact, it is the primary treatment recommended by the American Medical Association and the American Psychiatric Association, and it is also backed by extensive medical research through the prestigious National Institute of Mental Health. The principal behind light therapy is that by increasing a person’s exposure to bright light, the chemicals in a person’s brain can be brought back to normal levels and lessen or remove the symptoms of S.A.D. The advantages of light therapy are that it is simple to administer, requires no medication, and has minimal side effects. Although (S.A.D.) only affects a few of us, about 1 in 5 people.
(Contributed to Sermon Central by: Michael Otterstatter)
We need physical light but even more we need God’s light.
I want to share some of the functions of light. This will help us to understand God’s unique place in our lives. I am going to use a simple acrostic as a teaching tool. I want to take the word LIGHT and highlight five functions of light which also are five functions which God performs in our lives.
L...Light gives Life.
One of the first things God placed in this world was light. In Gen. 1:3 God commanded that there be light.
One of the major teachings of I John is that life comes from God and eternal life comes through Jesus Christ. Apart from Him there is no life.
Ill- When I was a boy I found some quail eggs that had been uncovered by my uncles hay cutting equipment. The nest in which the eggs rested had been torn apart by farm equipment. I knew the eggs would not survive because of this. I came to the rescue. I took the eggs home, put them under a light and hatched them under a light. Light gives life.
Ill- Dr. Alexander Popaderos, a famous Greek philosopher, used to teach an ethics class for two weeks on the island of Crete. And this particular summer just as he was getting ready to close the class, the last few minutes of the class, he said, “Now are there any questions before we go?” And just as he was getting ready to say, “OK then you’re dismissed,” a little man in the back of the room, a rather timid looking man, sort of carefully raised his hand and said, “Dr. Popaderos,” “Yes” “I have a question” “Yes, what is it?” He said, “I’d like to know, what is the meaning of life?”
Dr. Popaderos very quickly quieted the group, he said to the class, “You know, if you don’t mind I’d like to answer that question.” He reached into his back pocket, and took out his wallet. He took out of the wallet a little mirror about the size of a fifty-cent piece, honed down on the edges, kind of sparkling. And then he told this tale, he said, “When I was a child, I began to realize that I could have so much fun with that mirror. I would simply catch the glint of the Sun, and shine that mirror into an otherwise darkened place. As I grew older I began to learn that this is no child’s toy. This is really a metaphor for my life. Now I am not the light—I am not the source of the light. I am simply a broken mirror fragment. But if I allow the sun to shine on my mirror fragment, it is amazing what light I can bring into darkness.” Then he said, “Ladies and Gentlemen, that is the meaning of life.”