We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light. ~Plato
There is a common misconception that the Bible is about good people, and its purpose is to make us better than we already are. But most of us feel pretty good about where we’re at. In other words, the Bible was written for the rest of the world.
I remember the first time I felt I was the outsider for whom the Bible was written.
I was 18 and attended a Bible study with similarly-aged Christians. We read a passage about people loving the darkness, and the teacher asked why that might be.
The room was silent, so I spoke up.
“I like darkness because I can hide in it. I can do all of the things that I want to do and no one sees. Darkness is safe.”
Thirty pairs of eyes stared. Every possible sin was written across my shirt as their minds raced. The teacher blinked, bit his lip, and then tried to steer the conversation back to what he had hoped to hear.
John tells us that we can’t walk in darkness and be part of God’s world. He is light and light will always overcome darkness. We are supposed to put away the deeds of darkness and go toward the light.
Do you avoid the town prostitute but hide in your closet indulging in Halloween candy? We can “pray” to many gods in a closet.
Maybe you know whose daughter had an abortion and think it serves her right when later she and her husband are infertile. Your lack of compassion is hatred.
Are you impatient with others who waste their money but your expenses go unchecked and justified in your own eyes?
John knew that we would want to place ourselves on pedestals, so he added a reminder:
8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us. 1 John 1:8-10 NIV
The Bible is filled with stories of people who screwed up – murderers, rebels, swindlers, bigots – and people who weren’t so bad in their own eyes.
Which of the two groups were unable to see when the Light shone on them?
Come into the Light.