This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. (1 John 1:5)
Only in fellowship with God can we have true joy. But what kind of God are we called to have fellowship with?
God is light means God is holy. We can infer this from the context. The darkness clearly means sin and unrighteousness. Therefore, light is the opposite of sin and unrighteousness; light refers to holiness and righteousness.
(A) Since God is holy, he is perfectly righteous and sinless.
Behold, God puts no trust in his holy ones,
and the heavens are not pure in his sight
You who are of purer eyes than to see evil
and cannot look at wrong,
(B) Since God is holy, he demands perfection from us.
1 Pet. 1:16
[S]ince it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”
You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it.
(C) Since God is holy, no one can save himself.
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
We have all become like one who is unclean,
and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment.
(D) Since God is holy, he will not condone sin.
The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation.”
How can a man be just before God?
How then can man be in the right before God?
How can he who is born of woman be pure?
Behold, even the moon is not bright,
and the stars are not pure in his eyes;
how much less man, who is a maggot,
and the son of man, who is a worm!”
The sinners in Zion are afraid;
trembling has seized the godless:
“Who among us can dwell with the consuming fire?
Who among us can dwell with everlasting burnings?”
“The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7)
Why can’t God simply forgive us? Why did Jesus have to die for us?
“Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness.” (Heb. 9:23; cf., Rom. 6:23)
Through Christ’s sacrifice we have been made perfectly holy, even though in and of ourselves the work of making us holy is still to be completed.
Heb. 10:10, 14 (cf., Phil. 1:6)
And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.
But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.
Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
… giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
The only way to have fellowship with the God who is light/holy is to be cleansed by the blood of Jesus – by faith. Only then can we experience true joy.
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith.
© Dennis M. Cortes 2022
Photo by Casey Horner on Unsplash
Leave a Reply