Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.” Then the Pharisees said to him, “You are testifying on your own behalf; your testimony is not valid.” Jesus answered, “Even if I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is valid because I know where I have come from and where I am going, but you do not know where I come from or where I am going. -John 8:12-14 NRSV
Many think that Jesus was just a man. A good man for sure. A great teacher. Some think him to be a prophet. His words in this passage indicate that he was much more. You would think a person was insane if they described themselves as the light of the world. These words demand that we embrace Jesus as something more than a man.
The gospels make it clear that Jewish religious leaders had it wrong about Jesus' earthly origins - they were not aware that he was born in Bethlehem. They were even more clueless about his heavenly origins. They walked in darkness.
In contrast Jesus tells us that his followers "will never walk in darkness". He teaches us that these "will have the light of life". In saying this he alludes to the wonder of the new birth and the powerful light of the Holy Spirit living in his followers. These no longer walk in darkness but are filled with divine light. These have had the eyes of their hearts opened.
We follow you so imperfectly Lord. Open our eyes today that we might be led by your divine light within us.
... this devotion is part of an ongoing series on the Gospel of John.