The Light of God’s Word
Posted by December 17, 2014on
The Bible is a source of light in a dark world. What does this simple analogy of light reveal about God’s Word and the effect it should have on our lives?
Light is fundamental to our human lives. Without it, our ability to function is very limited.
Scientifically speaking, most of what is known about the universe comes from information that has been carried by light. Light reveals objects through its interactions with those objects. For example, the light reflected back from an object reveals its color. Without light, the blessing of sight would not exist.
“White” light is the visible light we see every day. Using a prism allows us to separate white light by wavelength into the colors we know and love. We can gain a lot of useful information from visible light since it uncovers what is on the surface. For many that seems to be enough, but God’s people can look deeper and seek a more complete understanding (Philippians 1:9; 2 Peter 3:18).
Other wavelengths of light can penetrate deeper than visible light due to their different wavelengths, which interact with objects differently. For example, X-rays can penetrate the surface of an object and show us what is within.
God’s Word is the light of truth. A simple reading of the Bible reveals many truths on the surface. Many people can read it and gain principles from it. Sadly, most of them do not fully apply it to their lives.
As God’s people, we have been given the gift of His Spirit to see His Word at a deeper level. We can see wavelengths of the light of God’s Word that are not visible to most people. We certainly see those things on the surface, but we also see the deeper things of God (1 Corinthians 2:10). God’s Spirit gives us the blessing of sight that can use the light of God’s Word more effectively. God’s Word can reveal who we really are—both on the surface and deep inside (Hebrews 4:12).
Interaction of light
Light’s interaction with a material exposes its properties. Light can be reflected, absorbed, transmitted or diffracted.
How does the Word of God interact with us and our lives? We have to compare our lives to what we find in God’s Word because we are to live by “every word” of God (Deuteronomy 8:3; Matthew 4:4; Luke 4:4). We have to read God’s Word and apply it in our lives. Does the Word of God just bounce off us or pass right through us?
What about diffraction? Diffraction is when light passes through and hits the internal parts and is bounced in a particular direction. We have to use the Word of God to see what we are like. Paul tells us to “examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified” (2 Corinthians 13:5). We have only one standard to compare ourselves to: Jesus Christ.
We have to absorb the light and make it a part of our lives. Photoluminescence is when an object absorbs the light energy of a certain wavelength and then emits energy at a different wavelength due to the electronic structure of its material.
In a similar manner, we have to absorb the light of God’s Word and use it to change our lives. God’s truth has to hit us in our heart, and we have to humbly submit to it and let it create a change in our lives through the working and understanding given by God’s Spirit.
Where is your light going?
How does the Word of God change us? God’s Word changes us when we read it and apply it in our lives. The light of God’s Word leads us in a particular direction. We are to be developing the mind of Christ: “Till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:13).
Light travels as a wave and goes in a certain direction, often radiating outward like a light bulb. When the Word of God is internalized in our lives, it shows through our actions. We become a new person—constantly living more like Jesus Christ. This is how we can really be “the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14-16).
The light of God’s Word is fundamental to our lives. It teaches us what to do and how to live (Psalm 119:105). We have to use this light and follow the path that it illuminates.