Josh's Take

Jesus speaks in the book of Matthew about letting our lights shine before men.  The context and mood of this scripture is not that of a request but of a command.  Not optional.

So what is this light He speaks of?  What is the purpose of this light? How do we let it shine?
To answer these questions we must look at the life of Christ. Christ came to the earth not only to die for us but also to set an example for us.

I know a lot of people who do great things.  Some of them aren't Christians at all.  They give to others, the love people, and they refrain from a lot of sins.  But, this life they have chosen isn't a life which shines the light of Christ to the world.  Without the Spirit living within us we simply cannot shine the light.  The light Christ mentions here is none other than Himself.  In John 8:12 Jesus tells us that He is the light of the world.  He is the only real light and for us to let Him shine through us we must first know Him.  My father always says "you can't give someone something you do not have".

Secondly, the purpose of this light is just as important.  But, what is its purpose? Again, we look at the life of Christ for the answer.
Christ came to earth with great purpose.  His purpose was to show those he loved that He could not only redeem them but also add to them a joyful, enriched life that has great purpose. It is also our responsibility as his children to love others the way he does, to show them who Christ is through our lives, and be forgiving as He is so they may also have the opportunity to know Him.  The purpose of the light is the redemption of sinners and the glorification of the Savior.

How do we let it shine? The Lord has blessed us all with talents and opportunities. We each have a special purpose in Gods kingdom.  But first and foremost is to let the light of Christ shine through us all.  We are to "go ye therefore" and make disciples.  We are to love and to forgive people regardless of how they treat us.  We are to study to show ourselves approved.  We are to be honest and selfless.  But most importantly we are to love God with all our hearts, souls, and minds.  I think when we completely surrender to Christ, it can't help but be a bit brighter when we are around.

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