Tonight, we will begin a new study called, “Walking with God”. This study will focus on the book of 1 John. This evening’s teaching is entitled, “Effects of Light on Life”. There are so many different experiences when it comes to what we know as “religion”. Some people know no more than distant figures or icons they see in church buildings. Others know nothing more than ritualistic attendance in services that has very little impact on daily life. Others know that something large exists out there that seems to be involved in the directing of life but have not intimate connection to the Being.
It is very difficult to study the Bible and the book of 1 John without noticing something dramatic upfront: The intimate knowledge of and connection to God. Reading the words of John allows us to see the intimate connection between us and Jesus – the connection that binds the past (the beginning), that which is “now” (life manifested) and the future (that which consists forever – eternal) together in a Person. Walking with God is not the knowledge of a philosophy or adherence to a set of behaviors but it is the intimate knowledge of God. The whole subject of John’s teaching is fellowship (Fellowship: koinōnía (a feminine noun) – properly, what is shared in common as the basis of fellowship (partnership, community)).
When we carefully observe what is being said about knowing God in this definition, we see some powerful truths: partnership, community, shared, common. These terms take us beyond philosophy into familial knowledge and common destiny. Creating intimate contact with the Word of life bringing about a situation in which the type of worshipers the Father seeks are revealed: those who worship the Father in Spirit and truth (John 4:24). The goal put forth in the Scriptures is fellowship: to create fellowship with God which marvelously creates fellowship with others. It is in this type of relationship with God that we experience true and full joy. The message preached is intended to create this type of life – one in which we walk with God and know Him. This fellowship produces change within those who embark on the journey because of the nature of the One who they walk with. It is a journey of revelation. God is light – the inference here being revelation and purity. In Him, there exists no darkness – moral mixture or false character or lack of understanding. The first truth being this: You cannot walk with God and live in darkness.
Those who walk with Jesus live in revelation. This revelation is constant and releases that which is necessary for the participant to walk in life: both of physical (present) and of spiritual existence. If we say we know God and walk with Him yet live a life that reflects darkness, then we are lying to ourselves and others (hypocrisy and duplicity) and our behavior reveals our deception. Walking with Jesus changes our life into that which reflects how He lives. His nature can create nothing less or else. Our nature is in a constant state of growth into the life of God.
The truth of the matter is that as created beings, we are not God. It is an amazing thing that the life of God can be manifested in that which is created. Everything created has its own testimony of God, but humanity has a unique status. We are able to manifest the very nature of God in a multifaceted way. Some created things can reflect God’s knowledge but not His wisdom. Some created things can reflect God’s nature but not live it. Some created things can reflect God’s love but not His holiness. Humanity has the unique calling to be able to reveal God’s attributes through the presence of the Holy Spirit!
While God’s life is in us through the presence of the Holy Spirit – day by day we are being transformed into that which reveals God’s character through a truthful and submitted life. Walking with God creates an atmosphere of true fellowship with others. Intimacy with God creates intimacy with others. While we are not complete in His character, walking with God reveals His character and the places in which we need to be transformed into what we have had revealed. This requires honesty, repentance, submission, and love. Where you have these things operating, you will find the appropriate conditions present for true intimacy, not just with God but with others as well.
1 John 1:1-10 (NKJV)
John 4:24 (NKJV)
John 8:12 (NIV)
Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)
2 Corinthians 3:18 (NIV)
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Between the coming of the Spirit and the resurrection of Jesus, we see 50 days of relative quiet. Jesus is spending time with His disciple during 40 of those days, but His interaction with those outside His circle of disciples is limited leading to the aforementioned quiet. You see, Jesus is a “mover and a […]