Light and Darkness, Sin and Forgiveness
5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.
Upon coming to know Christ there was this overwhelming sense of being released from darkness. It was a blinding darkness, chains that held me back from knowing the other side of the coin. Until that day all I knew was whatever my mind had conjured. At the sound of a parable of Jesus my eyes were opened to a new world, a world of light. “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” – John 8:12
This light is like no other. It is not just the brightness of the sun, or the turning on of a lamp. It is something much deeper that reaches into your soul so you can see clearly all that is around you. When I was a child I would lie in my driveway and stare at the bright sky, daydreaming that I could somehow gather up all of that light and blue. I chose the bedroom in our new house because of the light that would stream into the room each morning. I have always wanted to be in the light, but never found satisfaction until that fateful night when I met my Savior. In truth I was walking in darkness, able to know there was something greater, but never able to achieve it.
25 To the faithful you show yourself faithful,
to the blameless you show yourself blameless,
26 to the pure you show yourself pure,
but to the devious you show yourself shrewd.
27 You save the humble
but bring low those whose eyes are haughty.
28 You, Lord, keep my lamp burning;
my God turns my darkness into light. – Psalm 18
There are those, and I know them personally, who will say that they are God’s child, that they have accepted Jesus into their hearts, but then they are caught up in lies and sin that make all who witness them slander Christianity. Christ does not come into our hearts, as if we offer a place of refuge for Him. Quite oppositely, we must run to Him, to live in His heart. We must deny ourselves and live to please Him. It is by His perfection that we may be made perfect.
14 Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne;
love and faithfulness go before you.
15 Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you,
who walk in the light of your presence, Lord.
16 They rejoice in your name all day long;
they celebrate your righteousness.
17 For you are their glory and strength,
and by your favor you exalt our horn.
18 Indeed, our shield belongs to the Lord,
our king to the Holy One of Israel. – Psalm 89
I must realize that I am still a sinner, though I am saved from the ruler of this world. I have been set free from sins power, yet I am not free of it’s presence. The power that broke the power of death and slavery to sin is now the same power to which I must turn in order to release those sins from my flesh. In the same manner as crying out, “Jesus is Lord!”, I must now cry out, “Jesus, take this burden from me!”. He is who purifies us from sin. Our works and our efforts will avail nothing. It is only in Him that I am saved from this life, and from this flesh. Realizing the need for a Savior is just the beginning. Now we must realize our need for His continued deliverance.
Where do you stand? Do you know you are a sinner? Do you say you know Christ but claim to be without sin? Pray that God would reveal what lies underneath. We cannot attain perfection until we are released from these bodies of flesh.
42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me. 43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! 46 Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? 47 Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.” – John 8
Lord’s Day 1, Question 2
What do you need to know
in order to live and die
in the joy of this comfort?
how great my sins and misery are; 1
how I am delivered
from all my sins and misery; 2
how I am to be thankful to God
for such deliverance. 3