“This is the message we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” – 1 John 1:5
When we wake up in the morning, we flick the switch on the wall and the light comes on. When we go to bed at night, we flick the switch again and the light goes off and darkness returns. As we consider the concept of light and the contrast of light and darkness, we’re well familiar with it, through physical experience, on a daily basis. As Christians, we also recognize that this concept and contrast goes far beyond the physical experience of what we see with our eyes and takes our attention directly to God Himself.
The Apostle John begins his first epistle by drawing us to consider Christ and His excellency. We’re drawn to consider the life we have in Him, as well as the fellowship we have with the Father and the Son. In verse 5, John focuses our attention on an important message that they heard from directly from Jesus. This was a message that they weren’t to keep to themselves, but were to proclaim to the world. Thus, John declares, “God is light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.”
Notice John tells us what God is, as well as what isn’t in Him. God is light. What does this mean? God is all of the beautiful perfection that can be represented to us by light. He is morally pure and omniscient. There is nothing in Him except what is bright and pure (Psalm 18:26, Habakkuk 1:13). In Him is perfect knowledge, righteousness, wisdom, holiness, and glory (Psalm 147:5, Psalm 11:7, Romans 16:27, Isaiah 6:3). He is the fullness of excellency and perfection. He alone has immortality and dwells in unapproachable light (1 Timothy 6:16).
What isn’t in God? “In Him is no darkness at all”. In this statement, John amplifies what he just said about God being light by a contrary negation. There is no darkness in God, not even a shadow. There is nothing impure, sinful, or evil (James 1:13-15). There is no moral defect or lack of knowledge in God (Psalm 92:15, Isaiah 40:28). There is nothing imperfect or defective in Him. There is no capacity of decay or corruption in God (Acts 13:35). He hates all evil, wickedness, pollution, and everything that pertains to darkness (Psalm 11:5).
Brothers and sisters, the absolute purity and perfection of our God should fill us with awe and wonder! I encourage you to study more about the God who is light this week. As we study and consider it, the fear of God should be before our eyes. Our God is holy! His holiness is beautiful and full of splendor (Psalm 96:9). We redeemed sinners, who were once in darkness, are now in the presence of and in covenant relationship with Him, which is amazing! For our Lord Jesus Christ is the Light, who through His life, death, and resurrection, brought us into fellowship with God. This emphasis on the purity and perfection of God, reinforces John’s message about our need as children of the light to walk rightly with Him, who is light, confessing and repenting of our sins. May God grant us grace to do so. Praise God for His Word!