“And the Light shines on in the darkness, for the darkness has never overpowered it [put it out or absorbed it or appropriated it, and is unreceptive to it].” John 1:5 Amplified
I have read this verse many times in my life, but perhaps not in this version – and definitely not with the insight and passion that I did just a few weeks ago. I am currently in a Bible study on One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. This verse was part of one of our weekly studies, as I read it once again, the words nearly jumped off the page at me.
But wait! I am getting ahead of myself. The “light” spoken of in the verse above is speaking about Jesus. Jesus was, and is, the light of the world. He shines on in the darkness. He is not overpowered by darkness. He is not absorbed or appropriated by it. He is not receptive to darkness.
What darkness, you may be asking? The darkness of all the evil and sin in the world. Only Jesus shines on in the midst of this darkness He is not overpowered by it, even if we feel like we are. As believers in Jesus, the “present darkness” cannot absorb or appropriate His light in us. Appropriate, in this context, means to take something from it owner without asking for it. Jesus owns light because He IS light. And as such, “The light of the world” cannot have it taken from Him because there is no greater power in heaven, earth or hell to ask His permission to take it. This may not be the best theological way to say this but, I believe you can grasp the concept by me writing it in this way.
Think with me about light versus darkness in our physical world. A dark room is lit up when you flip the light switch. But, the darkness cannot be “turned on” and envelope the light while the light is shining. The dark of night can be overcome with the light of daybreak, but the darkness of night does not absorb the daylight. It gives up its light gracefully to the dark.
Darkness is the lack of light, but light is not the lack of darkness. It completely dispels darkness, leaving nothing but light. This is exactly what Jesus does! Jesus is the light of the world. Picture a light fixture big enough to light a whole city. Impossible, right? But, Jesus is the “light fixture” that lights up the entire world spiritually – one person at a time. When we believe He came to earth as a God in human form; died and came to life again to atone for our sins…His light comes and dwells in us, dispelling the darkness of this world.
Here is another translation of the verse at the beginning of this post. It is from The Message: “…The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness; the darkness couldn’t put it out.”
Now that should excite you!