Jesus Light of the World - by Jeff Byerley

The Study - Mark 8:21-38 Jesus light of the world cont.

We reflected on this chapter that it is really all about Jesus' light.
We saw this in how Jesus responded to the woman accused of adultery v 1-11.
We reflected on the key verse for the whole chapter.

John 8:12. Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.

Jesus said this at the feast of tabernacles, when Jews gathered in Jerusalem to remember that God brought them through the trials in the wilderness, when they lives in tents or tabernacles. On the first night of the Feast of Tabernacles (John 7:2), the ceremony called “The Illumination of the Temple” was held. Four candelabra were lit up and were so bright that every courtyard in the city was lit up, or so it was said. It is against this backdrop that Jesus declares “I am the light of the world”. This was a light that would be forever and not just a short time like “The Illumination of the Temple”.

Jesus explains he is also the light of life. Jesus is the very light of God come among men; and Jesus is the light, which gives people life. A flower can never blossom when it never sees the sunlight. So our lives can never flower with the grace and beauty they ought to have until they are irradiated with the light of the presence of Jesus Christ

John 8:21-38 Remaining True Blue (See enclosure for text.)

We noted how Jesus' contrasting claims caused controversy:

V.23a "You are from below, I am from above."
V.23b "you are of this world, I am not of this world."
V24 "you will die in your sins unless you believe that I am he" [and live].
V31 "if you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples.
V32 "and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free." [no longer slaves of sin v.34].
V.38 I speak of what I have seen with my Father and you do what you have heard from your father [The Devil v.44.]

Of course the Jews made their own controversial claims.

V.33a "We are descendants of Abraham".[but not spiritual ones!].
V.33b "and we have never been in bondage to any one."?!
[Bold when under Romans rule but true nevertheless for those truly of God.]
Indeed they later claim:
V.41 the only Father we have is God himself."
V.48 "you [Jesus] are demon-possessed."

Concluding Thoughts

The passage confusingly talks of the crowd believing but not believing.
Vv 30, 31, 33, 37 show Jesus pressing them as to what they really believed.
Jesus is always God's touchstone of whether we truly believe.
We were amazed how boldly Jesus spoke the truth despite the rising opposition.
He knew the truth and the outcome of all things thus making him free from fear.
So may our lives!