Pastor Greg continues his ten-part message series digging deeper in the context behind ten different times Jesus told us clearly who He was. This week, Pastor G explores some of the historical, cultural, philosophical and religious context surround Jesus’ announcement: “I Am The Light Of The World.”
The people who walk in darkness will see a great light; those who live in a dark land, the light will shine on them…For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders; and His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. ~ Isaiah 9:2,6
Yeshua (HEBREW) ~ Salvation (ENGLISH
Yahweh (HEBREW) ~ LORD (ENGLISH)
Hallel Psalms ~ Psalms 113-118
Hall El ~ Praise El or Praise Elohim
Hallelujah ~ Praise the God Yah or Praise Yahweh.
The Lord is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation. The sound of joyful shouting and salvation is in the tents of the righteous; the right hand of the Lord does valiantly. The right hand of the Lord is exalted; the right hand of the Lord does valiantly. I will not die, but live, and tell of the works of the Lord. The Lord has disciplined me severely, but He has not given me over to death. Open to me the gates of righteousness; I shall enter through them, I shall give thanks to the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord; the righteous will enter through it. I shall give thanks to You, for You have answered me, and You have become my salvation. The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief corner stone. This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day which the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. ~ Psalm 118:14-24
THE EIGHTH DAY OF A SEVEN DAY FEAST
Shemini Atzeret ~ “The Eighth Assembly” or “The Eighth Day Assembly”
Simchat Torah ~ “The Rejoicing of The Torah.”
Eight is the number of “New Beginnings” in Hebrew thought.
But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people were coming to Him; and He sat down and began to teach them. ~ John 8:1-2
The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery, and having set her in the center of the court … ~ John 8:3
O LORD, You are the hope of Israel; all who forsake You will be put to shame. Those who turn away from You will be written in the dust because they have forsaken LORD, the spring of living water. ~ Jeremiah 17:13
They were saying this, testing Him, so that they might have grounds for accusing Him. But Jesus stooped down and with His finger wrote on the ground. But when they persisted in asking Him, He straightened up, and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. When they heard it, they began to go out one by one, beginning with the older ones, and He was left alone, and the woman, where she was, in the center of the court. ~ John 8:6-9
“Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” declares the Lord. “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the Lord, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.” ~ Jeremiah 31:31-34
Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” ~ John 8:12
We must work the works of Him who sent Me as long as it is day; night is coming when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the Light of the world. ~ John 9:4-5
“For my eyes have seen Your salvation, which You have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a Light of revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel.” ~ Luke 2:30-32
Logos (GREEK) ~ Word (ENGLISH)
“spoken word” or “speech” or “reason” or “plan.”
Greek Philosophy/Theology Usage (600BC)
“the divine reason implicit in the cosmos, ordering it and giving it all form and meaning.”
Phos (GREEK) ~ Light (ENGLISH) ~ Also “fire” or “firelight.”
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light. There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man … And the Word became flesh, and dwelt (tabernacled) among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. ~ John 1:1-9, 14
Katalambano (GREEK) ~ To Comprehend (ENGLISH)
“to aggressively take hold of in a forceful manner and make it it’s own.”
This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.
~ John 3:19-21
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 lampstand, 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. ~ Matthew 5:14-17
ALOHA GROUP QUESTIONS
READ: Isaiah 9:1-6
1) Orthodox Christianity understand this as a prophecy about Jesus. What does it mean to you that “the people live in a dark land?” What does Isaiah mean?
2) What does is mean that the government will rest on Jesus’ shoulders?
3) Which of these names in verse 6 mean the most to you? Do you struggle with any of them? Why or why not?
READ: Psalm 118
1) Pastor Greg shared that Psalms 113-118 are known as the Hallel (and the Halleujah) Psalms. Did you know Hallel meant Praise God? Did you know Hallelujah meant Praise Yahweh?
2) Did you know that the Hebrew word translated “salvation” here is the word Yeshua?
3) What is “the right hand of the Lord?” What are “the gates of righteousness?” Who is “the stone the builders rejected?” Who are the builders? How did they reject it? How did that stone become the chief corner stone? What does a corner stone do?
READ: Jeremiah 17:13
1) What do you think of Pastor Greg’s theory that this was the first thing Jesus wrote in the dust? Is it plausible? If this is what He was writing, and you were one of the men ready to stone the woman what would your first thought be?
2) What do you think of Pastor Greg’s theory that the second thing Jesus wrote in the dust was the names of the men with the stones from oldest to youngest?
READ: Jeremiah 31:31-34
1) How does God put His Law within us and write on our hearts? What does that mean and how does it happen?
2) God says no one will have to teach others to know God because everyone will know Him. Everyone will be forgiven and their sin remembered no more? Has that happened yet? When will it happen? How will it happen?
READ: John 8:12 and John 9:4-5 and Luke 2:30-32
1) What does Jesus mean when He says His followers “will not walk in darkness?” What does it mean that we will have “the light of Life?” What is that?
2) What does Jesus mean when He says we must work as long as it is day? What does He mean night is coming when no one can work?
3) Why is Jesus “a light of revelation to the Gentiles” and “the glory of God’s people Israel?” What’s the difference?
READ: John 1:1-14, John 3:19-21 and Matthew 5:14-17
1) As you read these passages about Light and darkness, what strikes you the most? When Jesus calls you “the light of the world” what does He mean and how does that work? How are you letting “your light shine before men? Why?