Our Role as the Bearers of Light
Jesus is the light which came from heaven. Jesus declares this and displays this light in his actions and words. In John 9 we read about how the Pharisees and the blind man reacted to this light. Jesus reveals who we really are in the light. We also read that our obedience to Jesus allows us to experience and know God more.
Another important question is raised when the blind man first seen begging.
And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
John 9:2 ESV
There were probably different reasons why this question was asked. Tradition would tell them that it was either the man or his parents' sins which made him blind. The people asking the question may have also expressing their compassion or pity for this man and his situation. It is likely that some of the disciples may have even known this blind man since this happened around Galilee. Whatever the reason, Jesus takes the opportunity to use his answer to focus on the things that really matter.
Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work.
John 9:3-4 ESV
Verse 4 is not the causal statement but rather a purpose statement. Verse 3 is the causal statement. Jesus dismisses the need to find blame for the man's blindness. It is more important to understand that Jesus is the light of the world and to better the life of the blind man. Jesus also reveals his task and invites us to help Him with this task.
Jesus does tells us that He is going to leave the world. Referring to his future death on the cross, Jesus tells us that He is going to leave this world. However, Jesus also invites His disciples with the word WE to do the work God gave Jesus.
We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work.
John 9:4 ESV
As long as Christ is in me and you, Jesus' light is in us. We also have a responsibility to fulfil the tasks the Father gave to Jesus. The needs of people around us is an opportunity for us to do the work of God. We are not to find fault but find ways to better the lives of people around us.
Through His words and actions Jesus declares that we are to better the lives of people around us and be a light. But we cannot be a light if there is no light in us. We cannot impact the lives of others around us if we do not shine this light.
This light transforms our lives and thinking. It motivates us and guides us. Jesus rebukes the disciples when they ask the question who has sinned. People with the light do not ask that question. Jesus has vested the light on us and we need to be intentional in our actions to show the light and better people's lives. Jesus is waiting for us to do good.
Although we are expected to fulfill the works of God, we also need to be aware of the attitude that we have when do the works of God. The Pharisees had an attitude that put their needs ahead of others and even ahead of glorifying God. Our attitudes are developed from our judgement of people. There may be underlying causes which force people to behave the way they do. Many times we can find reasons why they act they way they do. We may have even behaved the same way if we were in a similar situation. It is only arrogance which makes us think that we are better than others.
Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,
Philippians 2:4-9 ESV
We need to know that we have been given a mission within a season. Jesus has given us work to do, but that work must be done in a certain time. We will not always have the opportunities that we have now. Situations change and seasons end, so all the more to act now when we can.
We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming, when no one can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
John 9:4-5 ESV
Jesus is light and gave himself so that we may also bear His light and help others. As the light of Jesus reveals to us our sins and who we really are, let us that light to discern the problems and hurt that need to be remedied in this world in a loving, understanding and accepting manner like Jesus did.