In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. John 1:1-5, NASB
I want to continue the discussion of John 1:1-5. Last week, we talked about how the world hates the Light because the Light exposes us to the truth. I want to continue with that theme, but use two individuals, John the Baptist and Nicodemus and the different ways each accepted and approached the Light.
John the Baptist and Jesus were relatives. (Luke 1:36) Like Jesus, an angel came to one of his parents (his father, Zechariah) to tell him of his impending conception and birth. (Luke 1:5-25) Zechariah was told that his son, John the Baptist would be the forerunner of the messiah and “turn many of the sons of Israel back to the Lord their God. It is he who will go as a forerunner before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers back to the children, and the disobedient to the attitude of the righteous, so as to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (Luke 1:16-17)
John the Baptist probably grew up knowing that he was special. He knew that he had a specific calling on his life. He had to have been told the miraculous story of his conception and birth over and over until it was ingrained in him. In John 1:7, the author tells us that John the Baptist call was to bear witness to the Light so that Israel might believe. John the Baptist knew that he was not the Light. John the Baptist became famous for testifying about the Light and baptizing people. John the Baptist like light illuminates and exposes did everything out in the open while there was still daylight. He was famously known for calling Israel to repentance. (Matthew 3:1-3; Mark 1:3-5; Luke 3:2-4) He was so famous that the religious leaders (John 1:24) sent priests and Levites to question him about who he was. (John 1:19-22) But, John knowing who he was (even though he was famous) tells those who asked, that he was not the Messiah, nor was he Elijah. (John 1:25-27) Not only does John not brag on himself and his position, John tells his questioners, that the One (the true Light) who comes after him is so great, that he, John is unworthy to tie His sandals. (John 1:26-27)
In John 1:29-31, John the Baptist declares (out in the open daylight for all to see and hear) when he sees Jesus coming, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 30 This is He on behalf of whom I said, ‘After me comes a Man who has a higher rank than I, for He existed before me.’ 31 I did not recognize Him, but so that He might be manifested to Israel, I came baptizing in water.” And again in John 1:36-37, he declares that Jesus is the Lamb of God to two of his disciples. Again all of this is done out in the open in the light. The two disciples that were with John the Baptist, leaves him to follow Jesus. What is remarkable is that John the Baptist does not get upset that his disciples leaves him to follow the Lamb of God even though John the Baptist is famous also. John the Baptist knows that he was just the forerunner of the Light.
Now look at John, chapter 3 and Jesus’ encounter with a Pharisee named Nicodemus. Nicodemus had heard of Jesus’ teachings and had heard of His miracles. (John 3:2-3) Yet, Nicodemus, a religious leader came to Jesus at night, literal darkness because he does not want anyone to see. When we look farther at the exchange between Jesus and Nicodemus, we see that he is in both literal and figurative because he cannot see the true Light. Jesus tells him that, “unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus’ answer shows his level of darkness to the Light. Nicodemus like us gives a rational worldly answer that verifies his worldly position. Jesus even has to chastise Nicodemus, but he is so blind to the Light that he never sees. Throughout the entire exchange between Jesus and Nicodemus, the religious expert, he never sees. He never hears or understands when Jesus says in John 3:19-21, “This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. 21 But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.”
Even as believers, we are like Nicodemus sometimes, because the answer that Holy Spirit gives us is not the answer that we want to hear so we not only fail to hear, but we fail to see the truth being illuminated to us. We fail to remember that we walk in the Light because of what Jesus has done and not what we have done. What type of believer are you? Are you a John the Baptist believer, always willing to follow your call and walk in the Light and be a light for Jesus? Or are you a Nicodemus believer only willing to believe under the cover of the dark so the world does not know, but only “church folks” know about your light for Jesus?
 All texts are from the New American Standard Bible from Biblegateway.com unless otherwise noted.
 Jesus talks about John the Baptist’s light in John 5:35, “He was the lamp that was burning and was shining and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light.”