Summary: A look at the pre-Incarnate Christ, the Light of Life as described by John 1.
(4) In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.
(5) And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
(6) There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.
(7) This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe.
(8) He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.
(9) That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world.
Jesus is God’s light to all of mankind and the only One who can dispel the darkness.
The Light is Life
The Light Conquers Darkness
The Light is a Person
The Light is for Everyone
Are you afraid of the dark?
Do you remember a time in your life when you were thrust into darkness? Perhaps it was on a “dare” from friends to walk deep into the woods on a camping trip. Maybe you ran out of gas on a dark lonely road in the middle of the night and had no choice but to walk.
Have you ever entered a large, cavernous building alone at night? Have you heard it pop, creak and groan?
It’s pretty typical for children to be somewhat afraid of the dark, but sometimes adults are as well. I can remember being terrified in darkness as a child at times, but also being uncomfortable as an adult!
I believe there’s an innate uneasiness that we have with the dark. There is the odd person who actually enjoys darkness, but the typical human response is to avoid it if at all possible.
Darkness is associated with fear and terror. I ran across a poem by one of the chief Romantic Poets, Lord Byron, which is aptly titled “Darkness.” I believe it well illustrates the sheer, innate terror of darkness in the human soul when the poem states in part:
I had a dream, which was not all a dream.
The bright sun was extinguish’d, and the stars
Did wander darkling in the eternal space,
Rayless, and pathless, and the icy earth
Swung blind and blackening in the moonless air;
Morn came, and went and came, and brought no day,
And men forgot their passions in the dread
Of this desolation; and all hearts
Were chill’d into a selfish prayer for light:
Can you imagine with me total darkness? It’s rare that we see what can truly be termed a dark sky. Most of us live close enough to city lights, street lights or other artificial sources of light that we could easily read a newspaper outdoors at midnight.
But I’m talking total darkness. Many of us have experienced some blackened skies deep in the wilderness, yet starlight and moonlight are constant companions, constant sources of light that illuminate our world.
Technically, you can’t get away from light, even outside of our own solar system. Scientists tell us that even at the mouth of black holes in deep space, gamma radiation is emitted producing waves of light which can be measured by instruments as they reach the earth.
And speaking of measurement, it’s interesting to note a simple physics definition of light:
Light is electromagnetic radiation with a wavelength that is visible to the eye (visible light) or, in a technical or scientific setting, electromagnetic radiation of any wavelength. The three basic dimensions of light (i.e., all electromagnetic radiation) are:
• intensity ( brightness of the light)
• frequency (or wavelength), (color of the light) and
• polarization (or angle of vibration), which is not perceptible by humans under ordinary circumstances.
For our purposes today (we’re not teaching physics!) light is energy. Light is measurable, it is active, it has observable characteristics.
Yet define darkness-it is simply the absence of light! You can’t describe the characteristics of darkness. You can’t measure it. It has no speed or no wavelength, and no equations describe it.
It is simply, the absence of light. We could call it utter nothingness, utter blackness.
And we approach John 1. After speaking of Jesus Christ as the Living Word of God, Apostle John calls him “the Light of Life.”
Once again, we see the unmistakable parallel to the Genesis account of creation:
(3) Then God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light.
(4) And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness.
John’s allusion is clear. The first part of Chapter 1 sets the tone “In the beginning was the Word” …and that very Word was spoken forth as the logos of God. The Word of God, Jesus Christ was God’s complete and final word of revelation to man. The wisdom of God was communicated to man in the Incarnation.