Jesus Christ was in conversation with the Jews, including the Pharisees and the chief priests who wanted to arrest Jesus. And some of the Jews were receiving his words while others were not. And some of them believed Jesus was the Christ, and some of them did not. And then it says here that..
John 8:12 ESV
“Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’”
Many professing Christians today will confess that they are “struggling” with particular sins in their lives. Usually that means that they are regularly and consistently giving in to those sinful practices. But Jesus Christ died on that cross, not just to forgive us our sins, but to free us from our slavery (bondage, addiction) to sin so that we would now become slaves of God and of his righteousness, by God’s grace, and in his power and strength.
So, when Jesus said that he is the light of the world, just like light helps us to see physically, his light helps us to see spiritually, from his eyes. He helps us to see who he is, that he is righteous and holy, and his light helps us to see our own sinful conditions (outside of genuine faith in Christ), and his light illuminates the path of righteousness for us, and he shows us the truth and the way to life eternal with him. For he shows us that we must die with him to sin and now live to him and to his righteousness, in his power.
And so what he shows us about sin is that, if we want to be free from our slavery to sin, then we have to follow Jesus Christ in obedience to his ways. Many professing Christians are struggling with sin because their lives are not surrendered to Jesus Christ, and they are not committed to following Jesus Christ in obedience. And some of them believe they don’t have to obey the Lord, for they see that as legalism, which it is not. For all throughout the New Testament we are told that we must obey the Lord or we don’t know him. So obedience to our Lord is part of true faith in Christ.
And obedience to our Lord is essential to us having victory over sin (over the darkness). For we cannot conquer sin in our own flesh, for the flesh and the Spirit oppose each other. Flesh gives birth to flesh, not to the Spirit. And if you are regularly and consistently and willfully giving in to the flesh, and not to the Spirit, then the flesh is still what controls your life, and not the Spirit. And so you must yield to the Spirit’s control, and you must deny self, and follow Jesus in obedience, and forsake your sins in his power and strength, and then you will have victory over the darkness (victory over sin).
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
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Victory in Jesus
Words and music by Eugene M. Bartlett
I heard an old, old story,
How a Savior came from glory,
How He gave His life on Calvary
To save a wretch like me;
I heard about His groaning,
Of His precious blood’s atoning,
Then I repented of my sins
And won the victory.
O victory in Jesus,
My Savior, forever.
He sought me and bought me
With His redeeming blood;
He loved me ere I knew Him
And all my love is due Him,
He plunged me to victory,
Beneath the cleansing flood.