This phrase was penned by John Donne as a part of his work, Meditation XVII. When we examine his meaning, we are reminded of a powerful principle found in scripture.
As Christians, we have this idea that our relationship with God is between us and God, and that’s it. But that’s not it. You see, there are always others that are affected by our obedience or disobedience. We will never know who is watching us. We will never know who is looking up to us, or looking to us for guidance. When we examine scripture we can find countless examples of people who stood for right and affected those around them. There are also countless examples of individuals who did not stand. They fell to sin and brought others down with them.
Our relationship with God does not affect us only. Our decisions today determine more than you or I can possibly imagine. I would like to challenge you, next time you are tempted, or enticed by sin, remember: God has given you the responsibility of being the light of the world. The consequences of your actions, good or bad, will reach farther than you will ever know.
One more thing of note: In John 8:12, Jesus declared himself to be the light of the world. In Matthew 5:14, He declared that we are. It is evident that we have the same calling as Christ. In Matthew 5:15-16, Jesus explains that when our light shines, it will give light to others. He also says that others will see our good works, and as a result, they will glorify God. Let us strive to be like Christ, not only that we may be glorify Him, but that others may also.
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