The Light of the World

LeRoy Koopman

READ : John 8:12-20

This is the third in a series of remarkable “I ams” of Jesus. Previously He had claimed to be the bread of life and the water of life. Now He says, “I am the light of the world” (v. 12). If the two other assertions were bold, this one is much bolder.

To be the light means to be the source of knowledge and insight. It means to be fully informed. It means to know the truth. One who claims to be the light is also claiming to be a reliable guide for others. “Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life” (v. 12).

Furthermore, Jesus claimed to be the light of the world. Not just a local leader, mind you, but the light of the entire planet including all people, all cultures, all colors everywhere. And he didn’t just claim to be a light. He claimed to be the light, the one and only light.

This is indeed an outrageous, challenging claim. This claim demands a response one way or another. We simply cannot be neutral. If Jesus was not the light, he had to be a prince of darkness. In a world where everyone is being encouraged to make his or her own truth, we look to Jesus to lead us out of the darkness.


Open my eyes, Father, to recognize the true light and follow it. In Jesus’ name.