Biblegateway Verse of the Day

Live in the Light: Do Life

By Benjamin H. Liles

          I had a very interesting dream just a little bit ago. In the dream I had I was conversing with Someone I could not see. At the same time I was being shown a group of cynical, questioning people. One thing I kept hearing from "Someone" was "Be the light as I am the Light." I knew in my heart then and there who the Someone was: Jesus, my Lord and Messiah. Here's the thing, it's okay to question things and to be cynical. At this moment in time I cannot and dare not declare myself a pastor or even a minister of any church. But I feel a very strong calling to "Do life with others, and be a light."

          The verses are interesting to note because when Jesus walked the boundary of Israel in 1st Century AD (Year of our Lord), he said them to those He came across. In one instance He called out to several fishermen, working men of that time, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men" (Matthew 4:19, New King James). He also said other things as well, such as "In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:16, Berean Study), and "By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples" (John 15:8, New King James).

          There are people out in this world, wanting answers, desiring more from this life; they hunger and thirst for "Someone" more. I feel a lot like Philip the Evangelist probably did. He's the guy who was appointed by the apostles to help distribute food, and eventually went on to be a valid witness to a eunuch from Ethiopia.

          The story is that while Philip is going about his business, he's prompted by the Lord to, "[Get up] and go [south] along the road which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza... So Philip ran to him, and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah, and said, 'Do you understand what you are reading?'" (Acts 8:26-30). 

          Here's the thing, I believe in all honesty Philip listened well and faithfully discharged his duty to helping the guy out. He obeyed the voice of the Lord, went on down the road, listened to the Ethiopian official reading from Isaiah, and thought, "Hey, he might need some help understanding what he's reading." That's what's implied from the text here in Acts 8. 

          The thing with Philip is that he not only was willing to do what the Lord, Jesus, wanted and allowed him to do; he was not only faithful to do what was required of him, but he was willing to go. Half the battle is simply that - showing up. The other part is in the calling of "Be the light." 

          Jesus said this about a lamp that is lit: "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden...Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:14-16).  There it is in all it's simplicity: I woke up from a dream, seeing this people who are desperate for answers, looking for Someone to help them grow in the likeness of Christ. I'm willing to do my part and to point the way to the Messiah, Jesus, as Philip did. In the same breath, I don't have all the answers, but I am willing and able to look and search for those things that will make us all be more like Jesus who calls us to Himself, within reason and within His word - the Bible.

          That's the thing, as well. I do feel hugely called to point the way to Jesus and be one of the many who can say they did their utmost to "shine as a lit lamp" showing the way to Jesus. The most important part of that equation is also mentioning that He, Jesus the Messiah, died for your sins. He took them, as scripture declares, "As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our [wrongful conduct] from us" (Psalm 103:12). That's why Jesus went to the cross. The penalty for our sin is God's wrath against it. Only Jesus could stand in that spot, bearing the brunt of our wickedness. The reason we have life to begin with is to recognize God's desire for us is to have eternal life with Him. All it takes us for us to be willing and then faithful in doing what He calls each of us to do.

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