TEXT:  I John 1:1-2:2  
THEME: Christ has called us out of relationships grounded
in darkness into a life of light in which His love is reflected
TITLE: "The Fellowship of Light"

Series B
Third Sunday of Easter
Our Savior Lutheran Church
Pagosa Springs, Colorado
April 13, 1997

             

INTRODUCTION

(The nature of light is that it defeats and dispels darkness. Christ has described Himself as the light of the world and as such, He is the one source which can dispel the darkness of spiritual delusion in which the world dwells without Christ. In order to better understand this text, it is necessary to understand both the characteristics of darkness and light.)

I. DARKNESS CAN EXPRESS NO FELLOWSHIP.

A. Even to refer to a "fellowship" of darkness would be to misunderstand the
nature of the Prince of Darkness, that old snake, Satan.

    1. Satan has always been in business for his own benefit.
        a. It was in the beginning that pride welled up within him and he led a
rebellion of angels against God and his faithful angels.
        b. The purpose of this rebellion was to dethrone God and enthrone himself.

    2. True fellowship can only occur when there is concern for others and darkness
doesn't care one bit.
        a. The Prince of Darkness and his followers, is engaged in a no-holds- barred survival of the fittest.
        b. It is a mad race for wealth, power, prestige and with the Devil take the hindmost.
        c. "What I get is for me and if I am kind to someone, there's an ulterior
motive that serves my interest."
        d. Any thing I have and anyone I know is there to be used to fill MY needs.

B. Second, there is no light in the kingdom of darkness.

    1. Certain things are said to bring light, but they do not.
        a. "Provide for yourself and you will be satisfied."
        b. "Listen to your fleshly appetites and you will have satisfaction"
        c. "If you can exercise power over others, then life will be good."

    2. All of this is a vain attempt to satisfy the insatiable.
        a. The writer of Eccl. says...(2:10-11)
        b. How much is enough?? How much money? How much Power?
        c. Yes, much light is promised, but it remains a promise unfulfilled.

    3. No light is offered at the grave either.
        a. What does Satan care about your eternal destiny?
        b. His hunger is for your eternal pain...no one likes to suffer alone.
        c. So go ahead, listen to his lies:
            1.) "All there is is the here and now."
            2.) "Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow you die."
            3.) "Never, never think about the consequences, just satisfy yourself."

II. THE FELLOWSHIP OF CHRIST IS A FELLOWSHIP OF LIGHT.

A. The foundation of this faith is not a conjecture about Christ, but a reality. 

    1. Listen to words of the text:
        a. "...which we have heard" (v. 1)
        b. "...we have seen." (v. 1)
        c. "...we have looked at." (v. 1)
        d. "...our hands have touched." (v. 1)
        e. "...we have seen it." (v. 2)
        f. "...what we have seen and heard." (3)

    2. What was it that empowered these men...three small words, "HE IS RISEN".
        a. Here is hope for the hopeless masses lost in the darkness.
        b. Here is light for those who cannot see.
        c. Here is the only refuge from the darkness of the grave.

B. There is only one source for this light...Jesus Christ!

    1. Jesus did NOT say, "I am one of the lights of the world.", He said I am the
light of the world.
        a. Who else has paid for your sin?
        b. Who else was dead, but is dead no more?

2. All false religions are missing Him who is alive forever!

III. THE FELLOWSHIP OF LIGHT IS REFLECTED BY GOD'S PEOPLE.

A. John makes the point loud and clear. (1:5-7)

    1. Light cannot have fellowship with darkness.
        a. Our darkness has been removed at the cross.
        b. Him who was light took darkness on Himself.
        c. So far away from us have our sins been banished, that we have
no darkness left in us in the eyes of the Father.

    2. How does this happen? Listen to the text. (1:9-10)
        a. We have one who represents us before the Father. (2:1)
        b. We have one who is the payment for our sin. (2:2)

B. Since Christ has made us children of the light, we have the characteristics of
Him who is the light:

    1. Christ is Purity, Holiness, the essence of true knowledge, genuine wisdom
and bonifed joy.
        a. Is there something here you don't want?
        b. Is there anything here that would not enrich your life?

    2. That's what faithful obedience in our Christian walk brings...absolutely
nothing that is undesirable and everything and brings joy.
        a. It is ours through the power of the Holy Spirit growing strong in us
through Word and Sacrament.
        b. It is ours in the strengthening fellowship of believers and we share
His Word of light and life with one another.

    3. This life of light is ours, even when we have failed.
        a. We are forgiven in Christ.
        b. We do not loose our inheritance.
        c. His blood and His empty tomb avail for us.

CONCLUSION

Come, now to the light of life! Here deposit your sins and leave the darkness behind forever! Walk in newness of life, in the wisdom of God and in the joy of His Church! In Jesus' name. Amen!

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