WALKING IN THE LIGHT
1 JOHN 1:5-9 NKJV
5 This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
This letter was written by the John who was one of the original 12 disciples of Jesus. He has been referred to as the apostle of love as it is a major theme of this letter. We don't see him discuss love in this first chapter, but he is heading that way.
God declares God to be light with no darkness in Him at all. People who have talked about the dark side of God are missing this bold declaration. God is light, love, and life. And John wants his spiritual children to have fellowship with this wonderful Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ.
John writes that the key to fellowship with God is walking in the light. I believe we can add walking in the light we have without taking away from the subject. When I first came to the Lord, one of my friends that I met at Bible school was from the Boston area. Growing up in a Jewish and Catholic home, alcohol was a part of his life. Early on in our Bible school days, he sincerely told me that he preached so much better after he had a six-pack of beer. Coming from such a mixed background into a Charismatic Bible school, this was a culture shock to him. But he was walking in all the light he had at the moment. After being in the Bible school environment for a few months, he had a revelation that one did not need to catch a buzz in order to preach effectively. And me coming from a Baptist background, I was totally in shock at my friends' beer buzz preaching enhancement. I did not think he was headed to hell, but I thought the lightning was sure to strike at some point.
John is encouraging these believers to walk in the light, which produces fellowship with the Father. In doing that, something else very important takes place. The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin. The implied thought is that Jesus' blood cleanses us from the sins we commit out of ignorance. For those of us who have walked with the Lord for any period of time, we look back on some of the things we may have done early in our walk and shake our heads. And hopefully, some of those things are no longer a part of our lives. Thank God for His mercy and the powerful blood of Jesus that makes up for our ignorance.
But as we grow in grace, we can still find ourselves committing sins even when we know better. We still have the flesh to deal with, and the flesh never goes away. The more we walk in the light of God's Word and truth, the stronger we become spiritually, and the flesh has less of an influence. But when we do miss it, thank God for 1 John 1:9. When we confess our sins to God, He is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us. We are not spiritually reborn, just forgiven and cleansed. What a blessing.
Now, it becomes important to receive God's forgiveness by faith and move forward. Don't find yourself waiting for a feeling or a sign to indicate that you are back in right standing. Go ahead and accept God's forgiveness, thank Him for it, and then continue to walk in the light.
This entire devotional is an application. John writes practical truth that helps us in our walk with the Lord. Learning to walk in the light and receive forgiveness are major parts of a productive Christian life.
Thank You, Father, for the blood of Jesus. Thank You that I am cleansed and can have fellowship with You and Your Son. I purpose to walk in the light that I have.