February 01, 2022 – Tuesday
John 8:12 NIV
12 When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
What precedes this is currently debated. Most Bibles have 7:53-8:11, the story of A Woman Caught in Adultery, but the earliest known manuscripts do have these verses. However, a few manuscripts include these verses, wholly or in part, after John 7:36, John 21:25, Luke 21:38 or Luke 24:53. I mention this only because if these verses are removed we return to chapter 7 at the Feast of the Tabernacles and (v37-38) On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”
Temple guards had been sent by the chief priests and the Pharisees to capture Jesus and bring Him to them. The guards had been so moved by Jesus’ teaching they could not bring themselves to capture Him. The Pharisees angrily said (v47), You mean he has deceived you also! At the end. speaking to Nicodemus who had defended Jesus, they said (v52), Look into it, and you will find that a prophet does not come out of Galilee. They ignored the fact Jesus had indeed been born in Bethlehem where David had lived.
With this as background, it makes sense to me that verse 8:12 for today would follow 7:52, although I believe 7:53-8:11 are part of the story of Jesus. So, moving forward, after His teaching in the temple the day before saying, Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them. Then on the very next day, in the temple once again, He says, I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.
When Jesus described Himself as the light of the world that clearly meant people had two choices. They could choose to believe in Him and follow Him and know the spiritual light of God where they would never walk in darkness, but have the light of life. Or they could choose to reject all that He offered and live a life in spiritual darkness. It should not surprise you to know the Pharisees choose darkness and argued about the validity of His testimony. The most telling part of the questioning of Jesus by the Pharisees was in v19 when they asked Him Where is your father? To which He replied, You do not know me or my Father. If you knew me, you would know my Father also,
It should also be noted Jesus said I am the light of the world, not the light of Israel. That tells us He would be – and is – a light to all nations and all peoples including Gentiles. This harkens back to Isaiah 42:6-7, I, the Lord, have called you in righteousness; I will take hold of your hand. I will keep you and will make you to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles, to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.Here the you is God’s servant, the Messiah, Jesus.
Jesus coming as a light, as the Light to the world, happened as it was foretold and He still is the Light to the world, to all nations.
Prayer: Father God, It is my desire that more and more people will choose to walk in the Light of Jesus while following Him. Help us to share His Light to others so they might clearly see the choice before them. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton