THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT
Program Air Date - 9-10-06
LESSON TITLE: "WALKING WITH GOD: WALKING IN THE LIGHT"
"The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows
His handiwork." How true this verse is today, as we gather
together on another beautiful Lord's day, which He has so richly
blessed us with. No matter what it is like outside, everyday
should be magnificent with God on our side!
Thanks for joining us this day for the Living Word program. It is great to have you with us this morning for this time of worship to God. Let me encourage us all to do our part today, to make this time together acceptable in His sight. Now let's begin by approaching His throne in prayer.
There are so many good songs we sing together about our great savior, Jesus Christ. This morning we want to sing about how wonderful He is to those whom He has redeemed! So, won't you join in with the brethren at this time as we sing together the song entitled, "Redeemed!"
(SONG # 1)
My family and I were on vacation not long ago and we saw something really beautiful in the sky. It had many colors and stood out like a wonderful gift from God. I guess you know what I am talking about by now - a rainbow. We could see from one end to another and what a beauty it was, as well as a testament to the power of our God.
Of course the first thing which came to my mind again was our wonderful creator and giver of all - our God in Heaven. Have we forgotten that these rainbows have been given to us by God as a sign for those who believe in Him?
If you go back with me to the book of Genesis, we are reminded there of the awesome story of the flood. It rained for 40 days and 40 nights. And then the ark floated for over 100 days before it came to rest on dry land - on top of Mount Ararat! It was then that Noah and His family and all the animals left the ark and then Noah made an alter to the Lord God above. In Genesis chapter 9 we know that God was very pleased with Noah, and in verse 16, He made the following statement to His faithful servant, "The rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I will look on it to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth." So the rainbow was placed in the sky as a sign from God to all His creation. The very same sign to us as His creation today. But what was the sign that God wanted them, as well as us to know?
Go with me again to the Bible and let's read verses 13-15. There God told Noah, "I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. It shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud; and I will remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh." So, a rainbow in the sky reminds us of the promise of God that He will never again destroy the earth or His creation with water.
So next time you see one of these spectacular gifts from God in the sky, remember all that God has done, is doing and will do for you. Furthermore, let it be an encouragement to us to know that He had the power to do such a wondrous thing, because surely this means He will be able to fulfill all of His promises! Praise be to God for the clear evidences in nature of His awesome power.
This morning we have a guest speaker with us. He is the minister for the Church of Christ in Marshfield, Missouri. As well many of you know our speaker as one of the full time instructors at the Bible Institute of Missouri. We are happy to have brother Ted Clarke with us once again, to lead us in our study from God's Word. We thank him for being with us this day.
Concerning our topic, we are still considering our series called "Walking With God." Our specific lesson this morning is called, "Walking in The Light?" So, please stay with us and in a few minutes brother Clarke will return with this study from God's Word. Now it's time to join in our second hymn of the day, the name of the song, "Our God He Is Alive."
(SONG # 2)
Speaker: Ted Clarke
Good morning. It's a pleasure to be with you again here on "The Living Word" program. We hope today that you will find your way to the Kansas Expressway church of Christ and join with them in their regular Sunday worship to Almighty God.
The theme that we're studying here is "Walking in the Light." Light is essential to life itself. In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the first command that He gave was, "Let there be light," Genesis 1:3. All life forms depend on light for their existence. Even those life forms that dwell in the innermost parts of the earth and in caves where there is no visible light, they still depend on light that energizes the atmosphere of our creation for their very existence. Light is essential to life. That's true spiritually, also, and it helps us to understand why the Word of God is likened unto light itself.
The great psalmist in Psalm 119 and verse 105 says, "Your Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path." Light provides us to see the way so that we can make our way through this life, that is spiritually speaking. God's Word is light and without it, we would be in darkness and not know where we were walking and we would be engaging in all sorts of things that would bring us great harm. Then in verse 30 of the same Psalm, the psalmist says, "The entrance of your Words gives light. It gives understanding to the simple." So the light of God's Word is what we ought to use to guide us and to lead us in the way that we walk in this life. If we want to walk in a way that leads us from here to eternity, it'll be because we're walking in the light of God's Word.
Jeremiah chapter 10 and verse 23 says, "Oh Lord, I know the way of man is not in himself. It is not in man that walketh direct his own steps." We cannot see to know where we ought to go without the light of God's Word.
A little later on, the prophet Isaiah wrote in Isaiah chapter 5 and verse 20, "Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter." Isaiah says you cannot exchange light for darkness, nor darkness for light. They are incompatible and so we have to understand that there is a difference between that which light brings and that which the darkness brings.
Again over in Isaiah chapter 8 and verse 20, Isaiah encouraged the Jews of his day to go back to God's law and to His testimony and he said, "If they do not speak according to this Word, it is because there is no light in them." So people who did not speak according to God's Word or according to God's Word itself are not people who possess the light.
We come down to the New Testament and consider the things that are said about light. One of the most common things of course is the representation of Jesus as the light who has come down to the world. In John chapter 1 in verse 1, it says, "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. All things were made by Him and without Him was not anything made that has been made. In Him was life and the life was the light of men." Jesus is the light and He is the life of mankind today. It is only through looking to Jesus and seeing Him in the fullness of His glory and following His teachings that we can hope to have life when this life is through itself.
In verse 9 it says, "That was the true light which gives light to every man who comes into the world." Jesus is the light of the world and without following His teachings and His footsteps, we simply cannot go to heaven.
In John chapter 14 and verse 6, Jesus was very exclusive in what He said when He said, "I am the way, the truth and the life and no man comes unto the Father but by Me." Jesus is the light which brings life. He claims He is life itself and without approaching God through Him, we simply will be lost. We'll walk in darkness and cannot know the truth.
In John chapter 12 verse 35 beginning, Jesus said, "A little while longer the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you. He who walks in darkness does not know where he is going. While you have the light, believe in the light that you may become sons of light."
I want to talk to you this morning about how we become sons of light and walk in the light that Jesus has set forth. Christ came to this earth to suffer and die on the cross for the sins of mankind. I'm one of those people for whom Jesus died on that cross and so are you. Jesus came that you might know that you can have life and have eternal life through the light that He sheds on this matter. If we were to stumble about trying to find our own way, as Jesus said, we wouldn't know where we were going, but if we walk in the light then we can see where we're going. That's why we have flashlights and lights in our homes and outdoor lighting and all of that to help us to see where we are going so we can arrive safely at our destination. That's true in regard to God's Word, also. There are some who just simply stumble around out in the world and think, "Well, if I do this, I'll have salvation," but they never turn to the Word of God to see what God's Word says about the matter. Really as the book of Romans said, "God's Word is a light unto our feet and a light unto our path and it brings understanding to even the simple."
The best way for us to consider what one must do to become a son of light is to look in Acts chapter 2. Acts chapter 2 is the account of the first gospel message in the name of Jesus Christ being preached on the Day of Pentecost following the resurrection and ascension of Christ into heaven. On that day, the Holy Spirit descended upon the apostles and inspired them in what they would teach about the matter of sin and salvation and eternal life, and everything that the apostles spoke through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit is light that God has given to mankind today. We cannot just simply guess about what one must do to be saved, and thankfully we don't have to guess. We can know exactly. Some people see the Bible as a curse upon mankind but in reality it is such a blessing because it enables us to know for sure what it is that God would have us to do.
In Acts chapter 2, the apostle Peter spoke about Christ's death on the cross and about His burial and His subsequent resurrection. He said that God had planned all of this for the redemption of mankind. When those Jews that were there on the Day of Pentecost in Jerusalem heard Peter, it says in Acts 2 and verse 36, Peter told them that, "All the house of Israel know assuredly that God hath made this same Jesus whom you crucified both Lord and Christ." "Now when they heard this," the text says, "They were cut to the heart." They were pricked in their heart. And they asked Peter and the apostles, "Men and brethren, what shall we do?" Peter did not tell them as some would tell them today, "Well listen, you don't have to do anything because you already believe and if you believe, then you're saved. It's as simple as that." But that is not the case of the matter. The fact of the matter is the apostle Peter understood that they believed what he was saying because he had said, "Let all the house of Israel know assuredly or believe with all confidence," and when they ask Peter and the other apostles what to do, Peter said, "You repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission or forgiveness of your sins." These people wanted to become sons of light and the light of God's Word as spoken through the inspired apostles would lead in guiding them in the way that they should go.
Acts chapter 2 sets the pattern for all subsequent illustrations of what one must do to be saved because this was the first gospel message preached in the name of Christ. They were to hear the Word of God, to believe it with all their hearts, to repent of their sins, and to be baptized all in the name of Jesus Christ in order to receive the remission of their sins. Having done that, it says in Acts 2:47 that, "They were added to the body of Christ," that is to His church. And so, becoming sons of light today is not a deep, dark mystery of any kind. God's light of His Word has opened that and revealed that to everyone so that we need not wonder, but we can know precisely.
But after we become Christians is another matter and that is that we must continue to walk in the light. That is continue to let our lives be governed by the teaching of God's divine Word which is God's revealed light for us through His son, Jesus Christ. In 1 John chapter 1 beginning in verse 5, John says, "This then is the message that we have heard from Him and we declare unto you that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with Him and walk in darkness, we lie and do not the truth, but if we walk in the light as He is in the light, then we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus, His Son, cleanses us from all sins."
We can know what we have to do to become a Christian, a child of God, a son of light, and we can know what we must do to maintain that relationship with God. Continue to walk in the light of God's Word. God has given us these directions and instructions for us that we might know how we ought to conduct ourselves and while the first four books of the Bible, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, present the basic account of the life and ministry of Jesus Christ, the book of Acts is a history book which records the apostles going out and fulfilling the Great Commission that God gave them to "go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." And we learn from the book of Acts those cases of conversion there, how it is that one becomes a son of light. Then the rest of the New Testament, the epistles, both the epistles of Paul, the general epistles and even the book of Revelation gives us an understanding of what we must do as Christians, how we must live. We don't need to guess and worry about that and set forth our own speculation on what God accepts and what He does not accept. The fact of the matter is that we can know because God has revealed it and the light is there for us to see and to live our lives by.
We encourage you today if you are not a child of God to seek to become one who walks in the light, become a son of light by following the teaching of God's Word and obeying the gospel. We would encourage you if you are an erring Christian and you've fallen from grace and you quit walking in the light as Jesus is in the light, you need to return and get back on the path that Jesus walked and continue to walk with Him and look forward to being with Him in all eternity. You need to repent of your sins. It goes on here in 1 John chapter 1 in saying, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." There isn't any need for any of us to ever be walking in darkness. We can continue to walk in the light of God's Word understanding that He loves us and has provided the light to our path and a lamp to our way through His Holy and Divine Word.
If we at the Kansas Expressway congregation can help you in any way, we want you to know that we would delight in doing that. Perhaps you would be interested in a Bible Study in your home or a Bible correspondence course or you would simply like to talk to somebody about your spiritual condition, we promise you that we will cater to whatever your needs are. We want to help you become a son of light and we want to help you to continue to walk in light all the days of your life. The information that you need to call will be provided for you at the end of this program. We hope that you will respond. We thank you very much for being with us today. May God bless you.
(SONG # 3 - "When All Of God's Singers Get Home!")
Thanks for choosing to be with us today for the Living Word program. I hope and trust, that together we have all benefited from this service to our Lord. And let me invite you to join us every Lord's Day morning at 7:30 as we give this time to our Creator.
Now let me ask if you have any questions or comments about today's lesson? Maybe, you would like a free transcript or a free cassette tape of this program? Possibly, we could assist you with free Bible materials or free Bible correspondence courses? No matter what your need is, please contact us at the following address:
The Living Word
2540 N. Kansas Expressway
Springfield, Mo. 65803
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As followers of God, may we all learn to focus more on Him and on keeping His commandments, so that we might be found as those who are faithfully walking in the light of God!