7But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another. And the blood of his Son Jesus Christ is cleansing us from every sin. — 1 John 1:7
1The word was in the beginning, the word was with God, and the word was God by nature. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3Everything came into existence through him, and not even one thing came into existence without him. 4What came into existence in him was life, and that life was the light of humanity. 5The light was shining darkness, but the darkness didn’t overcome it.
6There was a man, sent by God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness, to give testimony about the light, so that everyone can believe through him. 8He was not that light, but he came to bear testimony concerning it. 9It was the genuine light that enlightens every person when it comes into the world. — John 1:1-9
Have you ever been working in a dark room with just one light shining on what you are doing, and someone comes into the room and stands between you and your light? You certainly hope they’ll move, and depending on the circumstances, you may tell them to. â€œGet out of my light!â€
Jesus came as a witness to God’s light. In fact, he was the light, but he had to live here as we do, and so he practiced reflecting God’s light to the rest of the world.
As Christians, we are sent into the world with a similar mission. We are God’s witnessesâ€”witnesses to Jesus the Christâ€”who are to show God’s light to the entire world.
But some of us, and I’m afraid nearly all of us at one time or another, have a great deal of problem with walking in the light. Instead, we stand in the light. What do I mean? Well, what I ask myself is this: When someone looks at me, knowing I’m a Christian, are they more or less likely to consider the claims of Jesus to be the savior of the world?
It’s a fairly simple question to answer, and 1 John 1:7 tells us how to check. If we are walking in the light, then we will have fellowship with each other. We have a habit in our churches of checking our Christian walk by our tithing, our participation in church committees, our attendance at church services, and other activities that publicly display the fact that we are part of a church. Now all of those things are going to be part of an â€œenlightenedâ€ Christian life, but that’s not the key. You can be paying your tithe, but doing so grudgingly, complaining all the way to the offering plate. You can participate on church committeesâ€”to disrupt them. You may be coming to church in order to gossip. But check your fellowship. Is â€œfellowshipâ€ the right word for the way you interact with other church members?
Another option for checking someone’s walk is to compare their doctrinal beliefs with some standard statement. Beliefs are important, but you can believe the right doctrines and still not have fellowship with other believers. If you are walking in the light, however, you will have fellowship.
You can test one more thing, but it’s one between you and God. Have you been cleansed by the blood of Jesus? Is God’s work in your life continuing to go forward?
On the other hand you may be standing in the light. The results are simple: A lack of fellowship! If you do not have fellowship with fellow-believers, you are standing in somebody’s light, pushing away from the church. It has been said that the biggest test of faith for a new believer will be getting involved with church organization; so many horrible things go on in church committees that many new Christians don’t have the stomach for it. But it shouldn’t be that way.
Check your fellowship. Do you need to get out of someone’s light?