Children of Light
“For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), finding out what is acceptable to the Lord.”
Beautifully and powerfully, today’s passage reminds us of the astounding miracle that occurred the moment we trusted in Christ for salvation. Paul does not say that we were merely walking in darkness before we knew the Lord. Rather, he wants us to know that we were darkness. Our problem wasn’t just that we had accrued a sin debt to God, but that we had a corrupt sinful nature as well (Psalm 51:5). Because God is of purer eyes than to look upon evil (Habakkuk 1:13) our sinful condition disqualified us from entrance into His heaven (Psalm 5:4). Our God, however, is as powerful as He is gracious. Somehow He was able to change our fundamental spiritual nature. We are now new creatures (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are no longer darkness. We are lights in the world (Philippians 2:15). Paul reminds us that we are now obligated to look the part, to reflect outwardly what Christ has made us spiritually. Our outward performance ought to reflect our new spiritual condition. The incorruptible seed with which we were born again (1 Peter 1:23) naturally brings forth fruit. The outworking of our regeneration (the fruit) is goodness, righteousness, and truth. In short, we are to be good people who do what is right. We are to be trustworthy people, people who can be relied upon to speak the truth always. Though our new spiritual nature is essential to proper moral conduct, it is nonetheless insufficient. In order to know how we ought to conduct ourselves, we need God’s special revelation in Scripture. God demands that we consult His word in prayerful study in order to determine how we might please Him who loved us first (Psalm 119:9). The same blessed Holy Spirit who regenerated us is the One who authored the Bible (2 Peter 1:20-21). He will not only illuminate the text for us (1 Corinthians 2:12), He will empower us to walk in greater obedience as we traffic through this dark world (Galatians 5:16-25). Until the Sun of Righteousness arises to flood the world with the light of His presence (Malachi 4:2), may we be faithful lights in the world, sharing with others what the perfect will of God really is, both in our words and in our actions. To God be the glory!