Yeshua once said, “35 Make sure that the light you think you have is not actually darkness. 36 If you are filled with light, with no dark corners, then your whole life will be radiant, as though a floodlight were filling you with light” (Luke 11:35-6). As disciples of Messiah Yeshua’s teachings, it is each and every one of our responsibility to make sure that we’re in possession of the light.
But, what exactly is light? How can we distinguish the difference between the light and the darkness? How can we make sure? What can we possibly do to let our lives be entirely radiant? This study discusses the surety that we assert in Messiah Yeshua, the manner by which we can exert it and allow ourselves to be radiantly distinguishable.
Through the mouth of His Prophet Isaiah, the Heavenly Father spoke to King Cyrus with the following words.
5 I am Hashem; there is no other Elohim. I have equipped you (i.e., Cyrus) for battle, though you don’t even know me, 6 so all the world from east to west will know there is no other Elohim. I am Hashem, and there is no other. 7 I create the light and make the darkness. I send [both] good times and bad times. I, Hashem, am the one who does these things. (Isaiah 45:5-7)
With these few words, the Heavenly Father introduces himself to a non-Israelite. He expresses that He alone created both the light and the darkness, a concept that we can read about in Torah.
3 Then Elohim said, “Let there be light,”and there was light. 4 And Elohim saw that the light was good. Then he separated the light from the darkness. 5 Elohim called the light “day” and the darkness “night.” And evening passed and morning came, marking the first day. (Genesis 1:3-5)
He then instructs that even though darkness preceded the light, the Heavenly Father spoke the light into existence and separated the light from the darkness. Yes, the Heavenly Father did see that the light was good; however, the Bible later informs us as that as the Creator, neither light nor darkness has affects the Heavenly Father: “Darkness and light are the same to you” (Psalm 139:12c). In relationship to the Heavenly Father, both the light and darkness are similar to Him. Why, then, create the light? The light was intended to benefit mankind who resides on the earth: “17 Elohim set these lights in the sky to light the earth, 18 to govern the day and night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And Elohim saw that it was good” (Genesis 1:17-8).
What, then, is this light the prophet was speaking about? Light is something that the Heavenly Father created out of darkness which He intended for godly people to benefit from. “Light shines in the darkness for the godly. They are generous, compassionate, and righteous” (Psalm 112:4). Again, “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it” (John 1:5).
Provided that the light was intended for godly people to benefit from, Yeshua encouraged his disciples with these words: “[…] Walk in the light while you can, so the darkness will not overtake you. Those who walk in the darkness cannot see where they are going” (John 12:35).
Just as much as there is a literal application to this light that we made mention of, so too there’s a spiritual application.
Speaking on behalf of the Heavenly Father, this same Prophet Isaiah said, “Listen to me, my people. Hear me, Israel, for My Torah will be proclaimed, and my justice will become a light to the nations” (Isaiah 51:4). Torah, the embodiment of the Heavenly Father’s instructions, is the source of this spiritual light that we as Messiah’s disciples reflect. The Prophet advised, “Look to Elohim’s instructions and teachings! People who contradict his Torah are completely in the dark”(Isaiah 8:20). Thus, by the word of the prophet, anyone who encourages disobedience to the Heavenly Father’s commandments is simply stumbling in the darkness.
King David understood that Torah was the source of his spiritual light which he reflected. To those who tried to contend with him about his faithful obedience, he said, “Depart from me, ye evildoers: for I will keep the commandments of my Elohim”(Psalm 119:115); unto the Heavenly Father, King David’s prayer was, “Hashem, sustain me as you promised, that I may live!” (Psalm 119:116). King David understood that he was expected to reflect Torah’s light unto
those who walked wickedly before the Heavenly Father: “Your word is a lamp to
guide my feet and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105).
Some may reason that Torah was done away with. They may even ignore the prophetic message that Isaiah penned. They too may even overlook King David’s writings as if means nothing. As if though ignoring the validity that the Bible was not enough, they too may ignore what Messiah’s closest companions themselves had to say.
Yet, we are compelled to look what Messiah’s closest companions had to say about reflecting Torah’s light.
One of Messiah’s closest companions wrote,
18 We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain. 19 Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets. You must pay close attention to what they wrote, for their words are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until the Day dawns, and Messiah the Morning Star shines in your hearts. 20 Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, 21 or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from Elohim. (2 Peter 1:18-21)
As a result, Messianic Jews accept that the entire Bible, from Genesis to Revelations, was written by holy men that were guided to write as they were influenced by The Holy Ghost, and we dare not to say otherwise.
Another one of Messiah’s closest companions wrote,
7 Dear friends, I am not writing a new commandment for you; rather it is an old one you have had from the very beginning. This old commandment—to love one another—is the same message you heard before. 8 Yet it is also new. Yeshua lived the truth of this commandment, and you also are living it. For the darkness is disappearing, and the true light is already shining. 9 If anyone claims, “I am living in the light,” but hates a fellow brother or sister, that person is still living in darkness. 10 Anyone who loves another brother or sister is living in the light and does not cause others to stumble. 11 But anyone who hates another brother or sister is still living and walking in darkness. Such a person does not know the way to go, having been blinded by the darkness. (1 John 2:7-11)
From John’s writings, we can easily perceive that he was reiterating that which was already established in Torah. It was not enough for John to mention that this was an old commandment already shining from Torah; he too said that Yeshua was the model example in which that light shone. From John’s writing, we also understand that anyone who contends with Torah is simply stumbling in the darkness to struggle with those who are have the light (i.e., orah). Why? The darkness struggled with the light since the very beginning of creation in order to maintain its stronghold over the light, but just as Elohim “separated the light from the darkness” (Genesis 1:4), so too He will declare the deeds of His righteous children good and separate the children of the light from the children of darkness. As John himself said, “For the darkness is disappearing, and the true light is already shining” (1 John 2:8b). Of the wicked, the Bible says, “You will grope around in broad daylight like a blind person groping in the darkness, but you will not find your way. You will be oppressed and robbed continually, and no one will come to save you” (Deuteronomy 28:29).
Henceforth, just as much as there’s a literal application of defining biblically the light, so too there’s a spiritual application where Torah Observance identifies those who shine in the midst of darkness and distinguishes a group of people from those who stumble in the dark. Yes, “The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in a land of deep darkness, a light will shine” (Isaiah 9:2). To those who are still living in the darkness but see the light, we encourage them with these words.
14 Get rid of your sins (i.e., violations to Elohim’s commandments), and leave all iniquity behind you. 15 Then your face will brighten with innocence. You will be strong and free of fear. 16 You will forget your misery; it will be like water flowing away. 17 Your life will be brighter than the noonday. Even darkness will be as bright as morning. 18Having hope will give you courage. You will be protected and will rest in safety. 19 You will lie down unafraid, and many will look to you for help. 20 But the wicked will be blinded. They will have no escape. Their only hope is death. (Job 11:14-20)
This study will now conclude with these last few thoughts.
How, then, can we be sure that we’re doing exactly what Messiah instructed? How can we be sure that we’re in possession of the light as opposed to darkness?
1) By admitting to the errors of our ways when we’re wrong, by ensuring within our own hearts that our actions were out of our love towards Elohim and not out of the love for our own personal gain, by not returning to the useless habits that corrupts good conduct, and by finding ourselves an instructor who teaches Elohim’s righteous standards, Messiah Yeshua (1 Samuel 12:20-4).
2) By making sure thatwe do not associate with the other people who are still remaining in wicked practices (reference Joshua 23:7).
3) By acting honorably and treating people with the dignity and respect that they deserve in accordance to their life’s accomplishments (reference Judge 9:16).
Without a shadow of a doubt, there will be those who will contend with our faithful obedience to Elohim; however, it is our responsibility that we reflect this glorious light of Torah as we admire it and imitate Messiah Yeshua.
© 2013 Nehr HaOlam Publications
Winslow, New Jersey,
All Rights Reserved.
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scriptures were taken from the New Living Translation of the Bible.
For more information, contact NehrHaOlam@gmail.com.
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