マタイ 6:22-23 「からだのあかりは目です。それで、もしあなたの目は健全なら、あなたの全身が明るいが、もし、目 が悪ければ、あなたの全身が暗いでしょう。それなら、もしあなたのうちの光が暗ければ、その暗さはどんなでしょう。」

This is actually one of the few places in this whole chapter that I had not underlined previously in the Bible I am currently using, so I asked the Lord for revelation on it. Blindness was rather more common in those days than it is now, because of a lack of understanding of medical factors involved in visual health, so this was a word picture Jesus' hearers could relate to. The zinger in this is obviously His statement about “if the light in you is dark.” Here He is applying the physical metaphor to spiritual reality. In English, “light” is often used as a figure of speech for “understanding,” and that usage may well come from this very passage. Everyone operates according to a particular world view. That is, we have a mental framework of how we think the world is put together and operates, and our behavior is remarkably consistent with that world view, whatever it might be. This is actually one of the major sources of conflict around the world today, as it has always been. What Jesus is saying is that when our world view is formed by the prince of darkness, that is, the devil, then we are in the dark indeed. Often we don't realize what our world view is, because it is formed unconsciously and is unquestioned. When God's truth comes in, it is light indeed, but sometimes we resist it and run from it, just as Jesus said in John 3:19-21. Any failure to see God as both loving and holy clouds the light that we have.


I had the extreme blessing of being raised by parents who both had a clearly Biblical world view. The unspoken assumptions in our home lined up with God's truth. That's not to say that I didn't stray, but it did mean that when I did stray, I knew how to come back. As great a blessing as this is, however, it has made it difficult sometimes for me to empathize with or even understand people with a different world view. That has made my evangelism less than effective at times, and it has also impacted my pastoral ministry. I need to learn better how to relate to those who are stumbling around in the dark to one degree or another, not with any attitude of superiority but with full grace and mercy, so that as many as possible may be brought from darkness into the light.


Father, I really need the help of Your Holy Spirit in this (as I do in everything, actually). People get very resentful when someone else claims enlightenment, and all sorts of emotions come into play. This certainly applies to the baptism in the Holy Spirit, which You had me administer last week. I pray that I would not fear people's reactions, but also that I would not offend needlessly. May I be fully available and useful to You so that as many as will may walk in Your light indeed, for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!


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