Jesus Christ takes away the gross darkness that covers the world 

 Fred R. Coulter—May 4, 2019

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Greetings, brethren! Welcome to Sabbath services!

We live in a world that is being deceived by Satan the devil, and more and more of evil and darkness is coming upon this world!

Isaiah 60:2 talks about the condition of the world just before Jesus Christ returns. "For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people…"

In Rev. 13 it says that the whole world is going to worship Satan the devil. Is that not gross darkness covering the people?

"…but the LORD shall arise upon you, and His glory shall be seen upon you…. [then it talks about what our work will be in helping the world] …And the Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. 'Lift up your eyes all around, and see. All of them gather themselves together; they come to you. Your sons shall come from far, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side" (vs 2-4). That's quite a thing we have to look forward to:

  • to be in the Kingdom of God
  • to see the glory of God coming

That's going to be a spectacular thing, indeed!

Let's see about the glory of God. It's going to be fantastic, indeed! There are times when God allowed some of His glory to be seen as He did with Moses.

Psalm 76:4: "You are resplendent with light, more majestic than the mountains of prey." Beautiful! Fantastic! Amazing what God is doing! It's amazing what God is, to live forever!

Psalm 104:1: "Bless the LORD, O my soul! O LORD my God, You are very great; You are clothed with honor and majesty."

  • What does it mean to be clothed with honor and majesty"?
  • What kind of light and apparel does God have for that.

Verse 2: "Covering Yourself with light as with a garment, and stretching out the heavens like a curtain."

Verse 31: "May the glory of the LORD endure forever; the LORD shall rejoice in His works." Of course, the greatest works are going to occur after the plan of God has been completed with human beings. That's going to amazing to contemplate. Let's see some other things concerning light:

  • how it relates to us
  • what we need to do
  • what it is that God does for us
  • how we come to God

We going to learn, also, how God works with us, and how interesting it is that that light in us needs to be light, indeed! Notice what this is living in a dark world:

Psalm 27:1: "The LORD is my Light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?…." That's true for all of us! We don't need to fear anything, regardless of the circumstances as the become difficult or hard to deal with:.

  • God is there help us
  • God is there to encourage us
  • God is there to comfort us
  • God is there to fight for us

"…The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?" (v 1). That's really something to think about!

How the Light or the Spirit of God is the strength of our lives; physical, though spiritually being prepared for the Kingdom of God! That's an amazing thing!

When you look at what David wrote in all the Psalms that he wrote, he had really tremendous insight and vision into God. Living in this world, it is very easy to get bogged down. So, here's what we need to always continually do. That's why we need:

  • prayer every day
  • study every day
  • Sabbath every week
  • Holy Days every year

These keep us in the understanding, knowledge and teaching of God so that we can grow in that Light, and at the resurrection we will receive full glory!

Psalm 37:1: "Do not fret yourself because of evildoers, and do not be envious against the workers of iniquity, for they shall soon be cut down like the grass; and wither as the green herb. Trust in the LORD, and do good…" (vs 1-3).

That's the important thing to always keep in mind. Always trust in God regardless of the circumstances around.

"…dwell in the land and cherish faithfulness. Delight yourself in the LORD" (vs 3-4).

Rather than getting angry and mad at the Lord because problems and difficulties are there, "Delight yourself in the LORD…" that He shall deliver you!

"…and He shall give you the desires of your heart" (v 4). What are the desires of your heart?

  • Are they to be in the Kingdom of God?
  • Are they to be a son/daughter of God?

Then we need the Light of God in our lives so that we can have that to live by and walk by and do things in this world that's covered with gross darkness! Here's how you do it:

Verse 5: "Commit your way unto the LORD; trust also in Him, and He will bring it to pass. And He shall bring forth your righteousness like the Light… [at the resurrection] …and your judgment like the noonday. Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him; do not fret yourself because of him who prospers in his way, because of him who carries out wicked schemes" (vs 5-7).

Let's come to another Psalm that talks about glory, majesty and power of God. Of course, this will be during the Millennium. That's going to be something! Think about what it's going to be over in Jerusalem on the earth (Isa. 4). There will be the Light by night and the pillar of cloud by day over the huge tabernacle of God. No temple like it was with the children of Israel.

Psalm 97:1: "The LORD reigns…" Does Christ rule in your heart? That's how we are to have self-control and yield to God. Does He reign in your life?

"…let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of islands be glad. Clouds and darkness are all around Him; righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne. A fire goes before Him and burns up His enemies round about" (vs 1-3).

Think about what that's going to be when Christ returns and coming down off the Sea of Glass and fighting that battle, the last battle: the Battle of Armageddon. That's exactly what's going to happen. This also has to do with the Lake of Fire for the evil ones.

Verse 4: "His lightnings light up the world; the earth saw and trembled. The mountains melted like wax at the presence of the LORD, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth" (vs 4-5).

That's what happened when God came down on Mt. Sinai, and Moses was allowed to see a small portion of His glory.

Verse 6: "The heavens declare His righteousness, and all the people see His glory." That's quite a wonderful thing for us to understand!

We're going to see in a little bit how the Light of God, what it is for us and how it works with us and in our lives. Right here in Psa. 97 we have another preview of it and how it works.

Verse 10: "You who love the LORD, hate evil! He preserves the souls of His saints; He delivers them out of the hand of the wicked. Light is sown for the righteous…" (vs 10-11).

We're going to see that Light includes quite a few things, but it all comes from God and His Holy Spirit.

"…and gladness for the upright in heart. Rejoice in the LORD, you righteous ones, and praise His Holy name" (vs 11-12).

Let's see what else God has for us and how this works out in our lives. Let's focus in on the Word of God as Light, and enlightening our eyes, teaching us the way of God.

Psa. 119 would be a very good Psalm for you to study in depth; there's so much in here. I truly believe that this is also a prophetic insight into how Christ loved the Laws of God, commandments of God, Truth of God, testimonies, precepts, statutes and judgments of God. All of them are Light and Truth!

Psalm 119:105: "Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path"—to show us the way we need to go! How can we know anything about life, except by sheer chance of understanding a few things, without the Word of God?

Let's see what the Word of God does for us. Psa. 19 tells us an awful lot about God: His glory, what He's doing, and the magnificence of what God has for us. Then how God is working with us:

  • with His Spirit
  • with His Truth
  • with His Word

All combined together so that we can grow in grace and knowledge!

Psalm 19:1: "The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament proclaims His handiwork." Think about that every time you see some great wonderful picture of the universe!

What an awesome thing, indeed! There are literally trillions of stars! That ought to tell you that God's plan is going to be awesome, once all of the things concerning human beings and the whole plan of God carried out on the earth for us to enter into His Kingdom and be His sons and daughters. The whole universe! What will that be like?

Verse 2: "Day after day they pour forth speech, and night after night they reveal knowledge. There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard" (vs 2-3).

It's literally true that there are sounds coming from the outer universe that are quite amazing!

Verse 4: "Their line has gone out through all the earth and their words to the ends of the world. In them He has set a tabernacle for the sun"—so that every day and every night we have a demonstration of God's creation!

Also, when you look at it, it shows us how much He loves mankind, to send Jesus Christ to be the sacrifice for the sin of the world! An amazing thing, indeed!

Verse 5: "Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoices as a strong man set to run a race, its going forth is from one end of heaven, and its circuit is to the other end. And there is nothing hidden from its heat" (vs 5-6). Now, that's something to understand!

We saw that the Law is a lamp and a light to David's feet.

Verse 7: "The Law of the LORD is perfect…"

All of those in Protestant land, if you think that the Law has been done away… If you had something perfect, let's say the most perfect sapphire in the world, would you throw it away for a rock? Of course not! However, isn't that what you do when you say that the Law has been abolish or done away, or that the Law is old and hateful? Think about that!

Verse 7: "The Law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandments of the LORD are pure…" (vs 7-8).

Why would you want to get rid of any of these? You wouldn't! Notice all of these combined together:

"…enlightening the eyes" (v 8). In other words, giving us clean understanding of God and His way! Notice how great that these things are:

Verse 9: "The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether, more to be desired than gold, yea, much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. Moreover, by them Your servant is warned; in keeping them there is great reward" (vs 9-11).

So, that's how we learn and how we're taught. The Word of God does that for us.

The Gospel of John is quite an excellent presentation by John bringing out all the spiritual things that Jesus did, so that we understand about Him more than any of the other Gospels.

Let's see how John starts out, how important this is and how this helps us understand about the nature of God. Is there one? Are there two? Three? Right here it tells us very clearly that there are two. That is substantiated by the Most High and the Lord God of the Old Testament and Jesus Christ and God the Father of the New Testament. Same personages, but different names.

John 1:1: "In the beginning was the Word… [Christ, and His Word is a lamp and a light] …and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." Can anything be more clear than that? No!

Verse 2: "He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and not even one thing that was created came into being without Him" (vs 2-3).

Men have never been able to produce life. All life comes from God, because He's the Creator and Author of life.

"…not even one thing that was created came into being without Him" (v 3). No evolution! No great thoughts of things that can't think to produce something that has life from which no life comes!

Verse 4: "In Him [Christ] was life, and the Life was the Light of men." All truth, all light, all knowledge and all understand comes through Christ.

Here's what happens in the world, v 5: "And the Light shines in the darkness, but the darkness does not comprehend it."

Since gross darkness is covering the earth, isn't it clear that very few people really understand anything about God? That's why there has to be a calling. People don't just come to God because they want to come to God. Most people who do that want to come to God on their terms, but God wants you to come to Him on His terms!

What are those terms: Repent and be baptized then you will receive the Holy Spirit and your mind will be enlightened and begin to understand. But no one comes to God their terms, it just doesn't work, it won't happen!

Verse 9: "The True Light was that which enlightens… [tie in with Psa. 19] …everyone who comes into the world." That means the light and the life of Christ!

Since He is Creator, everyone who comes into the world and has the spirit of man in them, which comes right at conception, that gives them human qualities and they are individual persons, male and female. All of this other gender stuff in the world is nonsense, and that's part of the gross darkness, which is covering this world!

Verse 10: "He was in the world, and the world came into being through Him, but the world did not know Him."

Isn't that something? They don't know Him! If you ask people why they were born and where they are going, they don't know; they have no understanding of any of that.

Verse 11: "He came to His own… [to the Jews] …and His own did not receive Him… [they crucified Him] …but as many as received Him…" (vs 11-12).

What does it mean to receive Him? To receive the Holy Spirit of God, because you've repented and have been baptized and have received the Holy Spirit! You are receiving Jesus Christ!

"…to them He gave authority to become the children of God…" (v 12). Later in John it talks about the Father and the Son, both, through the power of the Holy Spirit dwell within us.

"…even to those who believe in His name" (v 12)—meaning:

  • everything about Him
  • every that He stands for
  • everything that He has done
  • Who He is as the Lord God of the Old Testament and the Savior of the New Testament

Then it tells about what He did and why He did it. All of this comes to give us understanding of the Word of God.

Verse 14: "And the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us (and we ourselves beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten with the Father), full of grace and truth." Within light is grace, truth, righteousness and goodness!

Verse 15: "John testified concerning Him, and proclaimed, saying, 'This was He of Whom I said, "He Who comes after me has precedence over me because He was before me."'" That means that He existed before John! That's hard for a lot of people to understand.

Verse 16: "And of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace."

We have three sermon series:

  • Grace of God in the Bible
  • God's Grace and Commandment-Keeping
  • Grace Upon Grace

That's something you need to understand! Grace and commandment-keeping go hand-in-glove!

We will see later that Jesus Himself declared that He is the Light of the world. Just put two and two together. Since gross darkness covers the world. Who is the only One Who has the Light to take it away? Jesus Christ!

Christ enlightens everyone who comes into the world through giving them the spirit of man; that's what every man and woman has. Then upon repentance and baptism you receive the Holy Spirit and now God begins to deal with you in an entirely different way. That's part of grace upon grace.

John 3:15: "So that everyone who believes in Him may not… [conditional] …perish… [not just to die, but to no longer exist] …but may have everlasting life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish, but may have everlasting life" (vs 15-16).

In the Greek this is subjunctive meaning there are conditions. What are the conditions? We've already covered repent and be baptized! What are the conditions after that?

  • you love God with all your heart, mind, soul and being!
  • you keep His commandments
  • you do the things that are pleasing in His sight
  • you obey Him in everything

Those are the conditions. You don't bring in the works of men!

Verse 17: "For God sent not His Son into the world that He might judge the world…" We'll find out that there is judgment, and that judgment comes after His resurrection!

"…but that the world might be saved through Him" (v 17).

Then Jesus explains something very interesting and good for us know and understand.

Verse 18: "The one who believes in Him…"—the one who is believing in Him on a continuous basis! Do you do that?

"…is not judged…" (v 18). Why? Because if you're believing in Him on a continuous basis, that He is the sacrifice for the sin of mankind—which came to us through the law of sin and death because of Adam and Eve—then what are we doing?

  • we are praying every day
  • we are repenting every day
  • we are yielding to God
  • we are doing the things that God wants us to do

So we don't come under judgment to condemnation. That's quite a tremendous thing to understand, and that part of grace upon grace.

"…but the one who does not believe has already been judged… [How?]: …because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God" (v 18).

Let's understand that everyone in the world is under judgment to God through His laws and commandments. Judgment is also today upon the house of God. If we yield to God then that judgment is unto life while for the world, their judgment is unto death.

Verse 19: "And this is the judgment… [happens automatically] …that the Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness rather than the Light because their works were evil."

They don't want to repent; they want to do their way! This is something very important to understand: no man, woman, church or corporation can tell God what to do!If God obeyed a man, that man would be defacto God. They weren't willing to repent! You have to come to the Light of Christ!

John 4:22—Jesus is talking to the woman at the well: "You do not know what you worship. We know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews…. [that's where it started] …But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in Spirit and in Truth; for the Father is indeed seeking those who worship Him in this manner" (vs 22-23).

So, it works two ways:

  • if you're seeking to worship God in this manner, God will recognize that

Whether you answer the call or not is another story!

  • if you're seeking God that way, God is seeking you.

Verse 24: "God is spirit, and those who worship Him must … [absolutely obligatory] …worship in Spirit and in Truth." That is in the Light of God through Christ!

John 3:20: "For everyone who practices evil hates the Light…"

Look at in the world, isn't that true? Is there more persecution even against nominal Christians who profess Christ? They're being persecuted and killed more than any other religious movement.

Notice what happens if you hate the Light. If you hate the Word of God, you won't even open it to read it.

"…and does not come to the Light…" (v 20). Will not come to Christ, will not come to the Word of God, will not look at it that way.

"…so that his works may not be exposed… [He does not want his evil exposed as evil; he wants to keep it that way] …but the one who practices the Truth comes to the Light, so that his works may be manifested, that they have been accomplished by the power of God" (vs 20-21).

Think of that for just a minute. You've heard a lot of people say that you just have to have faith and belief, there are no works required. What does this say? "But the one who practices the Truth…" what is Truth?

  • the Word of God is Truth
  • His commandments are true
  • His statutes are true
  • His precepts are true

From the beginning! God is true and it's impossible for Him to lie!

"…but the one who practices the Truth…" That's what true Christians do! "…comes to the Light…"—daily! All the time! Every Sabbath! Every Holy Day!

 "…so that his works… [it doesn't say faith and belief] …may be manifested, that they have been accomplished by the power of God."

Eph. 2—we've covered this many times, but let's cover it again because it's very important to realize and to know. Here's where the problem comes in trying to understand it. But let's see if we can figure it out.

Ephesians 2:8: "For by grace you have been saved through faith… [you are to believe; you have to have grace, but you are coming to God] …and this especially is not of your own selves…"

Not of your own works; your own works that you do contrary to the laws and commandments of God—even though that on the surface they look good—don't count!

"…it is the gift of God, not of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, being created in Christ Jesus unto the good works that God ordained beforehand in order that we might walk in them" (vs 8-10).

Whatever you're doing that God commands, that is not your own work! That is the work of God that He gave you to do. He will bless you and prosper you in that.

John 3:21: "But the one who practices the Truth comes to the Light, so that his works may be manifested, that they have been accomplished by the power of God"—through His Spirit! That produces the good works that God wants.

It is true, you've seen people who have been in the Church and they leave. What happens? They quit coming to the Light! What happens in them? Their light goes out!

Matt. 6 is about what happens and how darkness takes over.

Matthew 6:22: "The light of the body is the eye…." There is a lot of things they can tell by the eyes concerning the condition of the body and the health of the body! Also, concerning the mental attitude of the person, all there in the eyes.

"…Therefore, if your eye be sound…" (v 22). How will your eye be sound? Because:

  • you're following God
  • you're coming to God
  • you're studying His Word

which is a light to you, showing you what to do, and where you need to go!

"…your whole body shall be full of light. But if your eye be evil, your whole body shall be full of darkness…." (vs 22-23).

Not only darkness out there in the world, but in your whole life. Have you seen people that way? Yes, indeed! I've seen them!

"…Therefore, if the light that is in you be darkness…" Who is the author of darkness? Satan the devil! If you are following Satan's way you are in darkness, and your mind is in darkness!

"…how great is that darkness! No one is able to serve two masters…" (vs 23-24). That's true, but think of it this way: Who is 'the god of this world'? Satan the devil! You can't serve him and serve God! It's an impossibility!

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Several times Jesus says that He is the Light of the world. Those who reject Jesus Christ are in darkness. If they are in darkness, how great is that darkness?

John 8:12: "Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, 'I am the Light of the world; the one who follows Me… [we are to walk in His steps] …shall never walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of Life.'" That didn't go to well with the scribes and Pharisees!

John 9 is the account of the man born blind for the specific purpose for the glory of God, that the miracle would take place.

John 9:1: "Now, as Jesus was passing by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, 'Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents that he was born blind?'" (vs 1-2).

How can a child in the womb sin? Of course they can't! Kind of a nonsensical questions by the disciples.

Verse 3: "Jesus answered, 'Neither did this man sin, nor his parents; rather, this blindness came so that the works of God might be manifested in him…. [the very purpose] …I must work the works of Him Who sent Me while it is still day….'" (vs 3-4).

When Jesus was arrested He said that 'this is your time, the power of darkness.' Who instigated that? Satan the devil!

"…When the night comes, no one is able to work" (v 4). That has come periodically at different times in the history of the world!

John 12 reveals an awful lot about how Christ thought, what He did, what He spoke. Again, showing that He's the Light of the world.

John 12:35: "Then Jesus said to them, 'Yet, a little while the Light is with you. Walk while you have the Light, so that the darkness will not overtake you. For the one who walks in darkness does not know where he is going.'"

Isn't that true? People don't know why they're here, what they're doing or where they're going!

Verse 36: "'While you have the Light, believe in the Light [Christ] so that you may become the children of Light.'…. [those who have been called, have the Holy Spirit, the saints of God] …Jesus spoke these things and then departed from them and was in hiding"—because they were ready to get Him!

Let's continue on because this tells us an awful lot about people and about what Christ is doing and how He does it, and why we're called.

Verse 37: "Although He had done so many miracles in their presence, they did not believe in Him." What does it take?

Miracles do not produce conversion! Remember that only Christ is the true Light!

Verse 38: "So that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled who said, 'Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?' For this very reason they could not believe because again Isaiah said, 'He has blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts… [Why? Because they wouldn't obey!] …so that they would not see with their eyes and understand with their hearts, and be converted, and I would heal them'" (vs 38-40).

That's why there is the second resurrection, and that's quite a thing! That's a major doctrine in the Bible, which is only spoken of in two places: Ezek. 37 & Rev. 20. Yet, that covers most of mankind!

Politics are the worst things that can happen in a church. That happened with the Jews, they were all political, belonging to the Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes or whatever. But notice what this causes:

Verse 42: "But even so, many among the rulers believed in Him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, so that they wouldnot be put out of the synagogue… [Isn't that something?] … for they loved the glory of men more than the glory of God" (vs 42-43).

  • you love what people say to you
  • you like to be uplifted
  • you like to be told how good you are

That is the happiness in your life! NO, that's not true, the happiness in your life comes from:

  • the Light of God
  • the Truth of God
  • being converted
  • growing and overcoming
  • that you will be as Christ is in full glory of spirit being, light and salvation

Verse 44: "Then Jesus called out and said, 'The one who believes in Me does not believe in Me, but in Him Who sent Me. And the one who sees Me sees Him Who sent Me. I have come as a light into the world so that everyone who believes in Me may not remain in darkness'" (vs 44-46). You have the darkness lifted from you!

Have you ever in studying the Bible you're going along and all of a sudden you begin to understand something, like a light that is turned on? That's true, because the Word of God is a light!

Verse 48: The one who rejects Me and does not receive My words…" All the words of Christ:

  • we are to accept
  • we re to receive
  • we are to believe
  • we are to live by

"…has one who judges him; the Word, which I have spoken, that shall judge him in the last day" (v 48).

There are a lot of people out there who think that they are good Christians, who think they believe in God, who think they believe in Christ. But they are not, because they're not 'entering into the narrow gate' but the 'broad way.'

Matthew 7:21: "Not everyone who says to Me 'Lord, Lord' shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; but the one who is doing the will of My Father, Who is in heaven."

What is the will of the Father? All the words of Christ are the will of the Father. That's what Jesus said. All the words in the Old Testament are also the things of the Most High, spoken by the Lord God.

Verse 22: "Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy through Your name? And did we not cast out demons through Your name? And did we not perform many works of power through Your name?'" Great things that 'we did'!

What is Jesus going to say? That's nice, you really did it! Why were you keeping Sunday? Lord, we thought that was better than the Sabbath! Really? The very commandment that I said to remember you rejected and forgot?

Verse 23—Jesus says: "And then I will confess to them, 'I never knew you. Depart from Me, you who work lawlessness.'"

That's what He said in John 12; 'the one who doesn't receive My words, but rejects them,' the words that Jesus has spoken will judge him. Here's why: Jesus says:

John 12:49: "For I have not spoken from Myself; but the Father, Who sent Me, gave Me commandment Himself, what I should say and what I should speak." That's really quite profound when you really grasp all of that!

John 8:28[transcriber's correction]: "…I do nothing of Myself. But as the Father taught Me, these things I speak." What I see the Father do, that I do! What I hear the Father tell Me to do, that I do!

John 12:50: "And I know that His commandment is eternal life. Therefore, whatever I speak, I speak exactly as the Father has told Me."

A quite profound part of the Gospel of John!

1-Peter 2:6: "For this reason it says in the Scripture, 'Behold, I place in Zion the Cornerstone, chosen and precious; and the one who believes in Him shall never be put to shame.' The preciousness is to you, therefore, who believe;but to those who disobey, the Stone that the builders rejected has become the Head of the corner, and a Stone of stumbling and a Rock of offense; especially to those who stumble at the Word, being disobedient, unto which unbelief they also were appointed. But you are a chosen stock, a royal priesthood… [which we will be at the resurrection] …a Holy nation… part of the Holy nation of God, spirit beings] …a people for a possession of God, that you might proclaim His excellent virtues, Who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light" (vs 6-9)—the Light of God:

  • through His Word
  • through His Spirit
  • through His Truth

Verse 10: "Who once were not a people, but now are the people of God; who had not received mercy, but now have received mercy."

This is what the knowledge of the Light of God does for us. It's all because of answering the call of God. God is One Who calls, and we must answer!

2-Peter 1:1: "Simon Peter a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who have obtained the same precious faith as ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord" (vs 1-2).

This is an age where we can have all of this knowledge multiplied to us over and over again.

Verse 3: "According as His Divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life… [eternal life] …and Godliness, through the knowledge of Him Who called us by His own glory and virtue."

That's what the Light does, to bring us to God completely!
 
Verse 4: "Through which He has given to us the greatest and most precious promises, that through these you may become partakers of the Divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust." We really need to respond to God and do the things that we need to.

Let's see how great that this is, and how wonderful that these things are for us. 1-John is one of the most deeply spiritual and inspiring epistles in the New Testament.

1-John 1:3: "That which we have seen and have heard we are reporting to you in order that you also may have fellowship with us; for the fellowship—… [this is part of grace upon grace] …indeed, our fellowship—is with the Father and with His own Son Jesus Christ. These things we are also writing to you, so that your joy may be completely full. And this is the message that we have heard from Him and are declaring to you: that God is Light, and there is no darkness at all in Him" (vs 3-5).

Think about your relationship with God. You're praying to God, studying His Word, living by it, coming to services or having services at home—whatever it may be—God is there with you!

Remember the promise of Jesus, that 'wherever two or three are gathered in My name there I am in the midst.' God is! There were a lot of false prophets coming round at that time, as well.

Verse 6: "If we proclaim that we have fellowship with Him, but we are walking in the darkness…"

  • breaking the commandments of God
  • living without the Spirit of God
  • walking in darkness; utter darkness covering this world
  • walking in it, living in it

"…we are lying to ourselves…" (v 6). That's what makes professing Christians believe that they are right, because they are lying to themselves! If you believe the lie that you tell yourself, that's the worst kind of lie. A lie that you tell someone else, you know that it's a lie. But if you lie to yourself, and you believe that lie, that is truly deception. Satan doesn't have to do anything, you do it to yourself.

"…and we are not practicing the Truth" (v 6)—if we lie to our self.

Verse 7: "However, if we walk in the Light… [the light of the Word of God, the light of the Gospel, and so forth] …as He is in the Light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, His own Son, cleanses us from all sin."

Let's see how we are to be walking as God wants us to walk. Eph. 5 tells us how we are to walk and follow God.

Ephesians 5:1: "Therefore, be imitators of God…" How can you be an imitator of God and His way if you're living in sin, which is Satan and his way? The One is Light and one is darkness!

Verse 2: "And walk in love, even as Christ also loved us, and gave Himself for us as an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor. But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, do not permit it even to be named among you, as is fitting for saints; nor filthiness, nor foolish talking or jesting, which are not becoming; but instead, thanksgiving. For this you know, that no fornicator, or unclean person, or covetous person, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and of God. Do not let anyone deceive you with vain words; for because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore, do not be joint partakers with them. For you were once darkness; but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of Light" (vs 2-8).
That's how we re to live! That's how it is to be! Now let's see how we walk as children of light.

1-John 1:7: "However, if we walk in the Light, as He is in the Light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, His own Son, cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we do not have sin… [we're good people, we don't have sin; look at how good we are] …we are deceiving ourselves, and the Truth is not in us" (vs 7-8).

Here's what we are to do, and remember the model for the daily prayer. We are to repent every day! Think on that! Not just to what you do, because conversion is in the mind: what you think, what is there. That's also what you have to repent of.

Verse 9: "If we confess our own sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness…. [or darkness] …If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us" (vs 9-10).

What follows is very profound and all a part of walking in the Light and being children of the Light, and understanding the Truth of the Light.

1-John 2:1: "My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And yet, if anyone does sin, we have an Advocate with the Father; Jesus Christ the Righteous."

1-John 1:9: "…He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins…"

1-John 2:2: "And He is the propitiation… [continual atoning of our sins, continually] …for our sins; and not for our sins only, but also for the sins of the whole world." Lest we get lifted up and think we're so good!

Verse 3: "And by this standard we know that we know Him…"

  • IF you're in the Light you know Him
  • IF you're in the darkness you don't know Him.
  • IF you're walking in the Truth, you're walking in the Light

"…if we keep His commandments. The one who says, 'I know Him' and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the Truth is not in him" (vs 3-4)—therefore, he's in darkness!

Remember that Satan comes and transforms himself 'into an angel of light.' That light that he has is darkness!

Verse 5: "On the other hand, if anyone is keeping His Word, truly in this one the love of God is being perfected. By this means we know that we are in Him. Anyone who claims to dwell in Him is obligating himself also to walk even as He Himself walked" (vs 5-6). That is the Light that we have!

Let's see what Paul wrote to the Colossian and how it refers to the Light.

  • the Word of God is the Light
  • Christ is the Light
  • He is the Truth

All of that is how we are to live!

Colossians 1:9: "For this cause we also, from the day that we heard of it, do not cease to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding." This comes from walking in the Light!

Verse 10: "That you may walk worthily of the Lord, unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God; being strengthened with all power according to the might of His glory, unto all endurance and long-suffering with joy… [notice what this is to lead to] …giving thanks to the Father, Who has made us qualified for the share of the inheritance of the saints in the Light" (vs 10-12). That's quite wonderful thing!

Here's the inheritance; Philippians 3:20: "But for us, the commonwealth of God exists in the heavens, from where also we are waiting for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who will transform our vile bodies, that they may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the inner working of His own power, whereby He is able to subdue all things to Himself?" (vs 20-21).

What is it going to be like to have a spirit body like Christ has? We know that it says that God 'inhabits eternity' (Isa. 57)

We are going to be transformed from flesh to spirit. We are going to be removed from just a realm of daily physical living into being spirit beings; the very sons and daughters of God!

Let's see how John saw Jesus in His glory. John also was one of the three who went with Jesus to the Mt. of Transfiguration. There, in vision, they saw Jesus, Moses and Elijah. Jesus took those three there because they were the leaders of the twelve and would be the leaders of the Church as it developed. With that experience, that was so profound on the minds of all three, and we don't know the writings of the Apostle James because he was martyred in 42A.D. But Peter and John always refer to this very thing of seeing Christ.

Revelation 1:10: "I [John] was in the Spirit on the Day of the Lord… [prophetically visually seeing] …and I heard a loud voice like a trumpet behind me, saying, 'I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, and what you see, write in a book… [God always wants it written down so we know what it is; no adding to or taking away] …and send it to the churches that are in Asia: to Ephesus, and to Smyrna, and to Pergamos, and to Thyatira, and to Sardis, and to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea'" (vs 10-11).

Verse 12: "And I turned to see the voice that spoke with me; and when I turned, I saw seven golden lampstands; and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of man…" (vs 12-13).

This has to be formed in a circle and Christ is in the middle of it, the Head of the Church. This has nothing to do with the candle abra from the temple.

"…One like the Son of man, clothed in a garment reaching to the feet, and girded about the chest with a golden breastplate. And His head and hair were like white wool, white as snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire… [don't know what that's going to be like] …and His feet were like fine brass, as if they glowed in a furnace; and His voice was like the sound of many waters. And in His right hand He had seven stars, and a sharp two-edged sword went out of His mouth, and His countenance was as the sun shining in its full power" (vs 13-16).

What did Jesus say? When the children are in the Kingdom of God will shine like the stars! Like the sun! Daniel said stars; Jesus said sun!

  • that's the kind of existence
  • that's the kind of light
  • that's the kind of inheritance that God has for us
  • that's why we are to walk in the Light
  • that's why we are to live in the Light
  • that's why we are to have no darkness at all

This is what it means to be children of the Light!

Scriptural References:

  • Isaiah 60:2-4
  • Psalm 76:4
  • Psalm 104:1-2, 31
  • Psalm 27:1
  • Psalm 37:1-7
  • Psalm 97:1-6, 10-12
  • Psalm 119:105
  • Psalm 19;1-11
  • John 1:1-5, 9-12, 14-16
  • John 3:15-19
  • John 4:22-24
  • John 3:20-21
  • Ephesians 2:8-10
  • John 3:21
  • Matthew 6:22-24
  • John 8:12
  • John 9:1-4
  • John 12:35-40, 42-46, 48
  • Matthew 7:21-23
  • John 12:44
  • John 8:28
  • John 12:50
  • 1 Peter 2:6-10
  • 2 Peter 1:1-4
  • 1 John 1:3-7
  • Ephesians 5:1-8
  • 1 John 1:7-10
  • 1 John 2:1
  • 1 John 1:9
  • 1 John 2:2-6
  • Colossians 1:9-12
  • Philippians 3:20-21
  • Revelation 1:10-16

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Revelation 13
  • Isaiah 4
  • Ezekiel 37
  • Revelation 20
  • Isaiah 57

Also referenced: Sermon Series:

  • Grace of God in the Bible
  • God's Grace and Commandment-Keeping
  • Grace Upon Grace

FRC:bo
Transcribed: 5-10-19

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