You are the light of the world! ~ Let your light shine! ~ Be the light!
How many times have you heard these things said to you? Over you? Countless I’d bet.
So, what does Jesus mean when He says,“You are the light of the world”?
First, let’s remember that Jesus said He is the Light of the World. (John 8:12) And when we accept His gift of Salvation, put our faith in Him, and choose to follow Him, He puts His Light, the light of His glory, inside us to shatter the darkness around us and guide the lost and broken to Him.
Next, we must look at the lamps people used in His day to fully grasp the richness of this analogy.
The lamps were usually small, fragile, clay bowls that fit in the hand for easy transport. The reservoir was filled with olive oil during the day to ensure there was enough fuel to last through the night. And just in case, there was a jug of extra oil within reach to ward off the threat of darkness. (If the oil ran out, the light went out—casting them into utter darkness until morning.) On the side of the bowl there was a small spout-like indentation where the upper portion of the wick rested while the remainder imbibed itself in the oil. The wick fed the flame through the night, offering comfort and security to all who were near. And before the wick became to short and unable to maintain the flame, they would add another one to the bowl, allow it to become saturated with oil, and then transfer the light from the old wick to the new one, ensuring the light would never go out.
Now, let’s apply this analogy to us
We are the fragile clay bowl
The wick is our faith in Christ
The light is our witness for Jesus
The oil is the Holy Spirit
The only things that need constant care and maintenance in this analogy are the oil and wick. If we continue to grow, exercising our faith, and stay saturated in the Spirit, our witness will continually shine bright.
And the only way to ensure we have enough “oil” in our lamps to maintain the flame, is to invite the Spirit to fill us every day through prayer and quality time in God’s Word. Then, once we’re refreshed and refilled, with extra oil on the side, we can ask Him for the desire and power to do what pleases Him.
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