The Light of the World
Updated: Apr 18
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid, Matthew 5:14.
Jesus Christ spent the first 30 years of his life living the life of a young craftsman in a typical village. He grew up in a family with brothers and sisters. He attended the feasts in his village and those mandated by the law of Moses to be kept in Jerusalem. He attended weddings and funerals.
In that time he would have seen and felt the interactions with local officials and with the Roman Government. He would have had time to hear strangers from other lands as they passed through Nazareth. He would have heard the stories told by those who had traveled abroad. He would have had years of sitting in the local synagogue hearing the people being instructed out of the books of the law.
After his baptism, and after his fasting for 40 days and being tempted in the wilderness, he taught the people. As he looked upon those people and reflected upon the utter darkness of the world of men, he saw a very small fraction of the entire population of the world and knew that unlike the rest of the world, these people had the light of the laws of God. They had the words of God.
He told them, Ye are the light of the world. He didn't tell them this because of some happy sappy spirit they generated or because they all hugged each other. He told them that because as they sought to live in this world, as they worked, raised a family and worshipped God, they did so with the scriptures of truth. We see this stated in Isaiah 8:20; To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.
There was light in these people. It was the light of the word of God. For the commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life, Proverbs 6:23. In a world in which ships sailed, armies marched, nations arose and fell, people were born, lived, and died without ever knowing truth, these poor remnants of the once great Jewish Kingdoms had the word of God. they were the light of the world.
This morning I talked with a bedridden man who is recovering from invasive surgery. We talked about the first 48 years of his life in which he had once flirted with going to a fundamental Baptist Church but like the vast majority of those we call converted had ultimately fallen back into the misery of alcohol and drugs.
His wife and he hated each other and shared a small house filled their strife. His two children who had grown and left the house were overcome with drugs and alcohol. His body was broken from a farm accident and he spent his time cultivating pot and tinkering about the house.
A number of years ago he listened to some preaching on a website which among other preachers carries some of my messages. He asked for my contact information and sent me an email. I treasure every contact. I emailed him back and answered a fairly simple question. After a few emails back and forth, I asked him where he lived. It was 73 miles away.
I went to see him. He met me at his door with a shaved head, tattoos all over and by jumping up and down like an excited child. His wife's hair was the typical purple and and red of the depressed. She was polite and brought my wife and I coffee. She was a broken preacher's daughter married to a loser and now herself living a low miserable life on state subsidies and food stamps.
We discussed the King James Bible. Why? Because it's a fascinating topic, and there isn't much point in going further with people if we can't settle on a final authority on which to find truth. We built a relationship talking about that bible. I offered to bring him to church since they had no car. He agreed and for 3 years I drove the 73 miles each way to pick him (eventually both of them) up, the 73 miles to get him to church and then the 73 miles to take him home and then the 73 miles to get myself back home.
In that time, he began to get a grip on the fact that God really did keep his promise and there really was a perfect bible. There really was a church which put that bible above the name of God. I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name, Psalm 138:2. He began to be ashamed of his sin.
I was his friend. We didn't just talk bible. We had other interests in common. We spent those hours in the car talking bible, Star Trek, and whatsoever else came into our minds. He confessed later that in those early days he would find secluded places in the church to take drugs. Then he became ashamed of that.
Eventually, now that he had a final authority, he came to realize the utter bankruptcy of his earlier profession of faith in a Fundamental Baptist Church. He had been given a thumbnail description of the gospel, had been induced to ask Jesus into his heart and had been assured that that was the definition of calling upon the name of the Lord.
In reality the thumbnail description of the gospel which may have worked in others, wrought no faith in him at all. He had come to the cross with Monopoly money for faith and left with Monopoly money for salvation. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed?, Romans 10:14. In those days wherein he tried going to church, preachers would just keep telling him that since he had asked Jesus to save him, he must be saved.
The promises of faith did not work in him. He became jaded and disillusioned. Eventually, he and his wife succumbed to the miseries of sin and watched their little family dissolve.
I will never forget the day when he was too ill to come and someone else picked up his wife for church. As she came through the door, I asked "how is the old grump doing?". She told me that he wasn't a grump any more. He had become loving and caring. She marveled at the change. When I asked him about it later, he explained how the Holy Ghost had finally cornered him about his sin and unbelief. He had finally understood the cross as it pertained to him.
Today, his drunken and broken daughter has a new life in Christ and with her husband and son never miss the house of God. (Her written testimony) (Her oral testimony). His son also has a good profession of faith, attends church regularly and has announced a call to preach. They have all moved into the area to be close to the house of God.
As I talked with him this morning while he lay recuperating, he told me that he wished that he could stand on his rooftop and scream to people that the King James Bible is perfect. We reflected on how that information, and us developing his understanding of that had eventually brought him to a place where the Lord could break through his walls of pride and unbelief that manifested themselves is such vile sin.
I explained to him that he was the light of the world. On that sick bed as he recovered, he had the words of the living God in a King James Bible and knew it to be so. Most professing Christians have some uncertain flickering light in which they have no real confidence to guide them through dark places. King James Bible believers are the light of the world, not these sloppy agapee feel good sob sisters calling themselves Christian. We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts, 2nd Peter 1:19.
I hear of people trying to witness to neighbors, car salesmen, convenience store clerks, friends, doctors, lawyers and the like. They have been told by countless churches and preachers to witness to as many people as possible. Our Western culture is saturated with such witness and yet nothing changes. In reality, most people consider themselves believers and can point to some time in which they brought Monopoly money to the cross and left with Monopoly money for faith. They just listen politely.
Try telling them that the King James Bible is perfect. Watch the effect. If you build a relationship on that premise you will watch it build in faith. You will need to be sharp and answer many hard questions. From the earliest grades in our schools, whether Christian or secular, doubt is cast on the veracity of every word of God. They will show an amazing level of sophistication in challenging the King James Bible.
Are you up to handling those challenges? Do you want to see lives actually change? Start by broadcasting the truth of the Word of God. The King James Bible is perfect. Build solid foundations on that. Watch what God does.