Emitting Light

Tax collectors and other notorious sinners often came to listen to Jesus teach.  This made the Pharisees and teachers of religious law complain that he was associating with such sinful people—even eating with them!

Luke 15:1–2, NLT

Sitting in my office today, I was reflecting on Luke 15:1-2, and the weirdest thing came to mind, a bug zapper.  I know you remember bug zappers!  Most homeowners had a bug zapper contraption that zapped bugs in the mid to late 90s.   The bug zapper was an excellent tool for drawing and zapping bugs. The bugs were attracted to and drawn in by the light, but once the bugs were in, they got zapped.

Stay with me for a moment;

The emitting light from the bug zapper worked similar to the emitting light from Jesus.

When one reads Luke 15, it is easy to get caught up in the parables about the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son.  However, the overarching mission of Luke 15 is “God’s love for all people, regardless of their situation.”[1]  For the sake of time, I will not go into detail on each parable.  Instead, I want to focus on the light emitting from Jesus.

Remember I said the emitting light from the bug zapper worked similar to the emitting light from Jesus?  I chose the word similar because similar means almost alike.  The big difference between the light emitting from Jesus and the light emitting from the bug zapper is that when the light emitting from Jesus drew people in, it was not to kill them but to help them.  The love of God emitting from Jesus drew people from all walks of life to Jesus.

How does the truth from Luke 15:1-2 apply to you?  What do people see in you?  Do you emit the light of the love of Christ, or do you emit judgment?

What is one thing you can do this Christmas season to emit practically the love of Christ?

[1] Robert H. Stein, Luke, vol. 24, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1992), 400.
Dr. Draper Rogers is a pastor at Gardendale First Baptist Church and a contributor to North Jefferson Magazine.