Light • Devotion 3

Red Bolded Letters
Brianna Grunwald

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16

We see those red bolded words all the time. We see songs written about being “the light of the world.” However, sometimes, we as Christians forget what that means. We often think that when Jesus calls us “the light of the world” we have to do some grand gesture to leave a permanent mark on the world. It is often the little things that we do to show the light of Jesus within us that resonates with people.

As I read this passage, I felt like it gave identity and then a call to action. Verse 14 says, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.” This is Jesus saying that because we have seen, tasted, heard, and felt all that He has done for us, ultimately with His death on the cross, we now have His light within us, too.

The Gospel of John says, “In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:4-5). Jesus is the light of the world, so those of us who have accepted Jesus, through faith alone, have that light inside of us.

The Gospel of John also says, “If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you” (John 15:19). We are called to be set apart from the darkness of the world. Darkness will not overcome the light.

Have you ever gotten up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night and ran into the wall, an end table, or even stepped on something you should not have? Without Jesus, there is no light and we are stumbling in the dark. Verse 15 says, “Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.” Lights are meant to lead and guide us, not be put under a basket. Our relationship with Jesus is not meant to be hidden.
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Further, we are called to action in this passage. Verse 16 ends with, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Jesus does not just call us to do this action in hopes of recognition, but so that those who see your action will give glory and praise to God.

As Christians, if you live to please man and gain recognition, success, or esteem, you have it all wrong. We did not sacrifice, especially by death on a cross, to gain the recognition that Jesus deserves. We are called to live selflessly in hopes that our actions will lead and guide somebody to call upon the name of Jesus.

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