Jesus made what was then a very controversial statement in ear shot of the Pharisees when he said, “I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”
This was viewed as arrogant by the establishment for how can this Nazarene be the light of the world? They understood Jesus as saying he was perfect and that all should follow after him. The disgust of Jesus’ “I AM” declaration was not about spirituality for those who opposed it. It was about how much would this effect the livelihood of the establishment.
You see, if people took heed to what he said and believed he was in fact “the light of the world” well then that would lead to discipleship. Jesus would then be able to accumulate more followers and more followers would mean more power and more power would mean more control.
Jesus’ statement should have been glad tidings to the people who understood that he was not only stating a fact in John 8:12, but he was giving them an invitation. That invitation, if they chose to accept it, would change their lives forever.
The only people who kick against change are those who feel they stand to lose something if the current condition are altered. This is played out on many levels from religious sects to politics to the workplace — everyone is leveraging to control.
What I hear Jesus saying is this: What you seek is within me and if you stay in me you’ll never be wanting. Outside of me are the things stacked against you. Inside of me is love, understanding, prosperity and hope. The choice is yours.
Surrender to him. It’s cool inside!