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Who is Jesus according to Jesus?
Is Jesus the Light of the World?

Who is Jesus according to Jesus?
Is Jesus the Light of the World?

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Who is Jesus?

Jesus is not the light of the world literally but metaphorically

By Editorial Staff

As a matter of fact, numerous beliefs are held about Jesus, the truth about whom is considered one of the most controversial topics among the followers of the various faiths.

One group believes that he is God and/or the son of God; a second group believes that he is a prophet; a third group believes that he is neither God nor a prophet, nor even a messiah.

Anyway, let’s set all those beliefs aside, listen to Jesus himself, and know who he is according to the New Testament, with reference to the Old Testament and, sometimes, the Qur’an.

Let’s assume that all chapters of both the Old Testament and the New Testament are actually the words of God, discuss what Jesus said about himself and interpret the verses with equivocal indications through the verses with unequivocal indications in the Bible.

Is Jesus the Light of the World?

There are many awkward descriptions of Jesus in the New Testament. One of such descriptions is Jesus’ description as “the Light of the World”.

In the New Testament, we read: “There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world.” (John 1:6-9)

We also read: “When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’” (John 8:12)

We further read: I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness. (John 12:46)

In addition, we read: “Now you, if you call yourself a Jew; if you rely on the law and boast in God; if you know his will and approve of what is superior because you are instructed by the law; if you are convinced that you are a guide for the blind, a light for those who are in the dark.” (Romans 2:17-19)

But, what is meant by Jesus’ description as “the light of the world”? Is this description a literal or metaphorical one?

First of all, there is no doubt that God alone is the only literal light of the world. He is the true source and giver of light to His creatures including Jesus himself. This is well-established in the New Testament itself and sometimes cited as quotations for Jesus and his disciples.

In the New Testament, we read: “This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth.” (1 John 1:5-6)

Besides, the Old Testament confirms that only God formed the light and created darkness. We read: “That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things.” (Isaiah 45:6-7)

We also read: “It was you who opened up springs and streams; you dried up the ever-flowing rivers. The day is yours, and yours also the night; you established the sun and moon.” (Psalm 74:15-16)

We further read: “The LORD is my light and my salvation– whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life– of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1)

The New Testament tells us that God has unapproachable light. We read: “To keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which God will bring about in his own time—God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen.” (1 Timothy 6:14-16)

The New Testament also tells us that it is God Who really gives things light and Jesus referred to as “Lamb” is just a means of such light and the lamp that derives this light from God. We read: “The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it.” (Revelation 21:23-24)

We also read: “There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.” (Revelation 22:5)

Jesus made it clear to his disciples that it is God Who brought them out from darkness to light. In the New Testament, we read: “Therefore do not be partners with them. For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light.” (Ephesians 5:7-8)

The Old Testament emphasizes that it is the light of God which guides to the truth. We read: “Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man. For thou art the God of my strength: why dost thou cast me off? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy? O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.” (Psalm 43:1-3)

The New Testament indicates that Jesus has no innate light and it is God Who made him a light for people. We read: “For this is what the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’” (Acts 13:47)

There is no clearer evidence for the fact that Jesus was a metaphorical rather than literal light than being a temporary light for the world that existed only during his lifetime. The New Testament quotes Jesus as saying: “While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” (John 9:5)

We also read: “Then Jesus told them, ‘You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going. Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.’ When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.” (John 12:35-36)

According to the New Testament, being a light means that Jesus came up with light and guidance from God to people. We read: “That the Messiah would suffer and, as the first to rise from the dead, would bring the message of light to his own people and to the Gentiles.” (Acts 26:23)

In this sense, Jesus resembles the other human beings. Jesus described his disciples as the light of the world also because they were supposed to do good deeds and reform rather than spoil the earth. Therefore, Jesus mentioned that they would have a light shining before others.

We read: “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:13-16)

Moreover, Jesus described his disciples as the children of the light. He said: “You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness.” (1 Thessalonians 5:5)

Thus, Jesus is not the light of the world literally but metaphorically and other human beings can share this description.

_________

References:

1- The Holy Bible (Visit biblegateway.com)

2- biblehub.com

Read Also:

Is Jesus the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End or the First and the Last?

Is Jesus Life or Life-giver?

Is Jesus the Way and the Truth?

Is Jesus the Savior?

Is Jesus the Word of God?

Is Jesus the Prophet or Messenger of God?

Is Jesus in God or God in Jesus?

Are Jesus and God One?

Is Jesus the Son of God?

Is Jesus the Servant and Slave of God?

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Who is Jesus according to Jesus?
Is Jesus the Light of the World?

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Comments (18)

  • Fanie Bekker

    Fanie Bekker

    Perhaps we just to clear up something: we will just simply know what or who Jesus is according to Jesus. What we do have is not a tape recording or a transcription or a video or voice recording if what Jesus said. The only material available be it in the Bible or the Quran is complete hearsay. So, any person who tries to determine what Jesus said according to the Gospels or the Quran or any other document for that matter is really just analyzing what other authors wrote about Jesus, and words they put into his mouth.

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      “The only material available be it in the Bible or the Quran is complete hearsay???” Did you not say that you believe that the Bible is the word of God?

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      No I did not say I believe the Bible to be the word of God. Check again.

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      How come you are Christian though you do not believe that the Bible is the word of God?

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      Aha! People with knowledge about how the Bible came about, like the Theologians and Bible Scholars, understand that the Bible is merely a human made book, compiled of many other books, all with a Message. And it is that Message which makes a Christian to be a believer. The Bible itself, is like the Quran, merely a paper&ink messenger: God is however the Guide. So, maybe it is a surprise to you, but there are actually many Christians who do not believe the Bible to be the Word of God, or the Bible to be containing the Words of God, but who are 100% believers in it’s central Message. And that is true of the Quran as well: a Muslim does not really have to believe that the Quran is Allah’s Qalam, to be a devoted Muslim. For the same reasons: being that a study of the Bible and the Quran in both cases reveal that the Bible like the Quran are merely compilations of human made “Essays”… both carrying central themes, which in this case is conflicting, but nevertheless valid as God is the Guide… or do’nt you believe that?

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      I thought you might find this article interesting: “… it is only a matter of time before politicians began to boldly speak against the Bible. …”http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/49375-hillary-clinton-wants-christians-to-give-up-on-bible-beliefs

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      A person cannot be a follower of one faith without believing in its holy book. If you do not believe in the Bible as the word of God, you cannot be Christian. If you do not believe in the Qur’an as the word of God, you cannot be Muslim. The holy book of any faith is its guide. How can you know about God or even Jesus without a holy book? If you do not believe in any such holy book, you cannot know who God is.

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      That dear Abdul-Rahman is the difference between Islam, which seems to have as guides, the Quran and the Hadith, although even the Quran identifies Allah as the Guide, and Christianity where the Holy Spirit is the Guide: in essence God Himself by means of the Holy Spirit. Many Christians would insist like you that the Bible is the guide: but that is not correct. Or is it? The Holy Book is merely the messenger telling the story, especially in absence of the two Messengers in this regard being Jesus and Mohammed. After the messengers have delivered their messages their tasks are finished. Does the Quran not report Allah telling Mohammed that he is merely a messenger and should not concern himself whether his listeners beliefs him or not? (Q35:23-25)

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      And the Bible, especially Paul makes it clear that people without a Book has nature in which they can see the work of God and from which they could learn the expectations of God… and according to which they could live good lives. So Books are really not necessary: or is God/Allah helpless and does He need a Book to guide? I do’nt think so.

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      Do you mean that Christians, for example, do not need the Bible and they have just to wait for the Holy Spirit to go to them and guide them?

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      Like Muslims, one gets many kinds of Christians, depending on the Church a Christian belong to and the “School of Thought” that Church entertains. It is however never called School of Thought but it would help you as a Muslim understand the concept. Some groups in Christianity focus on the Bible as their main source of guidance and views the Holy Spirit to guide them through Scripture(the Bible) Some groups rely solely on the guidance of the Holy Spirit and merely use the Bible to confirm their experiences as “Spirit filled Christians.” These two groups are the extremes: allowing for different variations of these groups in the different Churches and individual Christians. Jesus’ disciples did not have a “Bible” and the only Scriptures available to them were in the Sinagoges: so according to the Bible, which I am sure you know very well, the Holy Spirit were “poured out” onto the Christians and from then on they were all guided and empowered by the Holy Spirit. All new Christians were filled with the Holy Spirit after they have been prayed for while hands were laid on them. But since then Churches have become very different regarding what they believe regarding the Holy Spirit and how they view the infilling and guidance of the Holy Spirit. But, yes, all Christians believe that they are guided by the Holy Spirit, no matter how different the guidance may be from person to person… bringing me to a question for debate: if all Christians are guided by the Holy Spirit why do they experience the guidance so different? There are many possible replies but one of the possible answers is not: because they should test their guidance according to the Bible. Why not: because even in Churches where people do that, you get vast differences in opinion. Just like in Islam: when I reverted, I was under the sincere impression that now all my struggling with the different Churches would be over because all Muslims believe the same and agree. Boy! Was I rudely awakenened! I am curious to learn you comments on this long contribution of mine.

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      Did the Holy Spirit appear to you?

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      Have you always been a Muslim?

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      Yes

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      No. What do you mean by: “Did the Holy Spirit appear to you?” No Christian has ever seen the Holy Spirit… or do I misunderstand your question?

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      So, how will the Holy Spirit guide you?

    • Fanie Bekker

      Fanie Bekker

      John 3:8

    • Islam4christians

      Islam4christians

      ؟؟؟

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