Summary: Message 2 in 1 John focusing on our need to walk in the light.
“Walking in the Light”
I. GOD IS LIGHT
A. THE MESSAGE 1:5
John reminded his readers that this message was not his but came directly from the Christ the source of life who eternally existed with the Father and came down to live among men.
“This is the message” emphasis on “IS” as in the message of ultimate importance. This is the message we “heard” from Him. (Perfect tense = heard and it still lingers) This message we now announce to you through this letter.
What is the message? “God is light”
Nothing complicated about those three words yet monumental in their meaning. Not God is the light or a light but simply God is light drawing attention to ones essential nature.
God’s essential nature is light. John being labeled the “Apostle of Love” one would expect him to start out with God is love. He actually doesn’t get to that declaration until chapter 4.
John draws us to focus first on God’s fundamental character and nature as light. Until we understand God as light we won’t appreciate His love.
The use of the term light communicates at several levels.
• Indicates intellectual perception – truth, knowledge, ultimate reality (God is truth)
• Indicates moral purity – holiness, purity, sinlessness, faultless (God is holy)
• Indicates ethical perfection – righteousness, justice, truthfulness, faithfulness (God is right)
• Indicates social passion – love, compassion, kindness, mercy, grace, goodness (God is love)
• Indicates spiritual awareness – wisdom, understanding, insight (God is all-knowing)
• Indicates power and influence – energy, power (God is all powerful)
• Indicates physical manifestation – seen and felt (God is self-revealing)
God spoke light into being even before there was a sun and stars. There is no life without light in both the material and spiritual dimensions of life. God is light.
God is life. John’s declaration that God is light, even though profound, is not new.
King David declared…
The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the defense of my life; whom shall I dread? Psalms 27:1
How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Your wings. They drink their fill of the abundance of Your house; and You give them to drink of the river of Your delights. For with You is the fountain of life; in Your light we see light. Psalms 36:7-9
His words are a light to illuminate our way.
O send out Your light and Your truth, let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill and to Your dwelling places. Then I will go to the altar of God, to God my exceeding joy; and upon the lyre I shall praise You, O God, my God. Psalms 43:3-4
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Psalms 119:105
Your testimonies are wonderful; therefore my soul observes them. The unfolding of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple. Psalms 119:129-130
John earlier wrote of Jesus as the Light.
In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light. There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. Jo 1:1-9
Jesus claimed it regarding himself.
"I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life." John 8:12 "I have come as Light into the world, so that everyone who believes in Me will not remain in darkness. John 12:46
We do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who said, "Light shall shine out of darkness," is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:3-6
Peter, James and John got a glimpse of the blinding light of His glory on the Mount of Transfiguration.
…He who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone possesses immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see. To Him be honor and eternal dominion! Amen. 1 Timothy 6:15-16
James affirmed that…
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. James 1:17