While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light….

JOHN 12:36

One of the marks of our modern time is the fact that many are guilty of merely “nibbling” at the truth of the Christian gospel.

If the cross of Jesus Christ means what it should to us and we know that we must carry it and die on it and then rise and live above it, we will have a constant desire to advance and gain spiritual ground!

The nervous people who want to put on the brakes, who feel the necessity for restraint in matters of spiritual desire and yearning for perfection, often use the expression, “Let’s not get fanatical about this.”

I can only ask: Is it fanaticism to want to go on until you can perfectly love God and perfectly praise Him?

Is it fanatical to find divine joy leaping up within your heart? Is it fanatical to find the willingness within your heart to say, “Yes, Lord! Yes, Lord!” and thus live daily in the will of God so that you are living in heaven while you are living on the earth?

If this is fanaticism, then it is the fanaticism of the Old Testament patriarchs and the Law; it is the fanaticism of the psalmist and of the prophets and the New Testament writers, as well![1]

36 The verb tenses here are instructive: “put your trust” (πιστεύετε, pisteuete, GK 4409; present tense, suggesting a continuous belief) in the light so that “you may become” (γένησθε genēsthe, GK 1181; aorist tense, suggesting a specific point in time) sons of light.[2]

12:36 Again the Lord Jesus warned His listeners to believe on Him while there was still opportunity. By doing so, they would become sons of light. They would be assured of direction through life and into eternity. After speaking these words, the Lord departed from the people and remained in obscurity for a while.[3]

12:36 believe in the light Refers to Jesus as the light of the world (1:4; 8:12).

become sons of light They are united with Jesus in His cause and empowered by Him.[4]

[1] Tozer, A. W., & Smith, G. B. (2015). Evenings with tozer: daily devotional readings. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers.

[2] Mounce, R. H. (2007). John. In T. Longman III & D. E. Garland (Eds.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Luke–Acts (Revised Edition) (Vol. 10, p. 539). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[3] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments. (A. Farstad, Ed.) (p. 1539). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[4] Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Jn 12:36). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

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