New York City, September,1882. The Edison Electric Company lights up one square mile of streets, homes and businesses. The electrical age was born! What a spectacle it must have been, for the first time the darkness of the city dispelled by light converted from electrical energy, giving way to the moniker, “the city that never sleeps”. There is something about lights at night that lure us to gaze. Sit around a camp fire, decorate your house with hundreds of tiny luminaries, stare at a nighttime city skyline, light up candles when the power goes out. We sense feelings of awe, joy, warmth, comfort, being home, safe. During the feast of Tabernacles, the priests in Jerusalem would light up 4 gigantic candelabras in the temple square as part of the celebrations. Worshippers sang and danced throughout the night in celebration of the joy found in God as He led his people out of slavery. These great lights were reminiscent of the pillar of fire in the desert and God’s firey glory in the Temple. Near the end of this feast, while these magnificent lights lured in the masses, Jesus helped a woman caught in adultery. The Pharisees wanted her stoned to death. Jesus wrote on the ground with His finger and then said,”He who is without sin, let him be the first to cast a stone.” Quietly, convicted by their own consciences, they left her alone. To the woman Jesus said, “…Neither do I condemn you, go sin no more”. Then Jesus spoke to the Pharisees once more, “I am the light of the world, he that follows Me shall not walk in darkness but have the light of life.” Notice how the darkness of sin is dispelled by the presence of true light, the light of God. This was Jesus’ ministry, to come be the light of the world that the peoples of the world could walk in His glorious light. “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness and the darkness could not comprehend it.” (John1:4-5) With this dramatic background of immense light, Jesus trumps all and claims His light is greater, more effective, more important. Why? Like the peace and forgiveness that the adulteress woman found, His light reveals and then heals the dark shadows of sin, leaving hope and joy to radiate forth. This is our ministry as well. Jesus commands us to participate in His ministry of bearing His light, taking it to the masses, and lighting up the gloomy hearts of those not yet in His Kingdom. “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew5:14). Let us devote ourselves this year to turning up the light. Let us commit to greater service in His Kingdom by shinning forth His light upon the souls of men by living out His gospel in faith. When people see your faith, they will be attracted to the light, the powerful healing light of God. God is light. Far more than felling warm, comfy and safe, in His light we are forgiven!