What does "you are the light of the world" that is found in Matthew 5:14 mean?
Why did Jesus command us to be the light of the world?
As we look at our world, we can see how dark it is and how much it needs light. People are in darkness; they can't see; their lives are darkened by sin; they don't know God; and they have not known the Scriptures.
The light of the world
In Matthew 5:14, Jesus said to His disciples, "You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden."
This text gives us a reminder that we have something to do, and that is to be the light of the world.
This means Jesus wants us to shine our lights like a lamp for others to see so that they may also move away from darkness and live with Christ. We should live as shining witnesses of God's light in a world darkened by sin. We are the light to the people wherever we go, and whatever we do and say.
As the light of the world, God has called us to do the following:
1. Share your faith with others.
We have to go out to share our faith with others. When we share our faith, we spread light. Let's not hide our story when we encounter Jesus in our lives.
Just like Paul, he was a persecutor until he met Jesus and became a preacher. He shared his faith with others. He went to the different cities, local synagogues, or local temples to share the light he received from Jesus (Acts 14: 21–25).
We have to be like Paul, who was brilliant at finding ways to spread his faith. Let others know that there is Jesus, who is the true light, and let others know that we love Jesus.
2. Be kind, compassionate, and nice to others.
The verse stated in Ephesians 4:32 is a correct example of how Paul, through God’s wisdom and Spirit, has encouraged us to be kind to one another. As it is written, "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."
Paul reminds us not to have a harsh attitude because Jesus is also compassionate and kind to us despite our sinfulness.
So, as the light of this world, we must live as Jesus wants us to live.
3. Be careful with our words.
We may be surrounded by people who speak hurtful and foul words. We may hear words that are not pure and not according to Jesus' will. Sometimes, we are blinded by the negative words that are practiced in the world, and we are tempted to practice them.
In Ephesians 4:29, Paul tells us, "Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. "
As a follower of Jesus, we are reminded to speak wisely, and our words should be pure because our words are what people will listen to and watch out for. We have to be different from them. In addition, we will not be an effective light if we speak harsh words.
4. Dress modestly.
All people need to have the person trait of being modest.
In 1 Timothy 2:9-10, Paul tells us, “I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.”
Paul is telling all people to dress modestly. We are called to a higher moral standard because we know God. Jesus tells us we are lights to the dark world.
If we look like the world, how can we be different?
It is fine to wear the clothes you like, but have limitation.
5. Be prayerful.
Praying consistently is the thing that we ought to do as Christians so that others may see and know how important prayer is.
Just like Daniel, he was the prayerful man in the Bible, as stated in Daniel 6:10. His habit was to pray three times a day and he always wanted to talk with God. Even though it was against the king's wishes, he still set aside time to pray to the Lord.
We must also be like Daniel. Let us pray diligently and wholeheartedly so that people around us will also be prayerful. We have to shine our lights through prayer, so let's make it our habit.
Matthew 5:14 tells us that our lights should always be on. Jesus has left us in the world to shine His light by living life with a genuine Christ-like attitude.
Always stand as a light because Jesus called you to be the light of the world.
© 2022 Jeva Jane Cordero