Being the light of Christ

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If we are going to change the world, we can’t be afraid to shine the light of Christ. What does it mean to be the light of Christ? 

Campus ministry leader Brad Bright refers to Matthew 5:13-16 in explaining effective ways to engage and reshape the culture by being a light.

“It’s really quite simple, Jesus said we are to be ‘salt’ and ‘light,’ and they’re not the same thing. Salt is a preservative, salt tries to slow down decay; it’s trying to stop decay. Light doesn’t try to stop anything, when light comes on the scene everything reacts to light.”

Light offends the darkness.

In a culture with heavy opposition towards a biblical worldview, we need to discern how much salt and light we project on a daily basis. Brad shares a concept called the three R’s of social change: roll over, react, reframe.

“In any situation we can roll over; we stick our head in the sand hope it goes away. Some things won’t go away though.”

“In the church we spend most of our time reacting to cultural symptoms; we’re playing Whack-A-Mole with all of these symptoms out there, trying to knock them back down into place.”

It’s easy to become reactionary when opposition strikes, but Brad reminds us that there is a time and a place for defense.

“Jesus said we are to be salt, but he modeled 90% light and 10 % salt. Sometimes we do 90% salt and 10% light. We need to get back in balance.”

In a way salt is our defense against culture, while light is our offense. Brad uses explains the importance of a balanced offense and defense from football.

“How many football games are won by a great defense? The only I’ve seen in the last decade is the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl, but that’s the exception. Rarely do you win with a great defense, you have to have a great offense.

“That’s why Jesus said we’re to be light – we’re to be the ones driving the message of the Gospel.”

The final R is to reframe. Jesus would often reframed his questions to challenge an opposing view. Brad shares an example of using this strategy in a conversation,

“When someone says, ‘I’m offended you prayed in the name of Jesus.’ I say ‘I’m kind of offended you tried to censor the content of my speech, but the real question here is what do you have against Jesus?'”

We are the light of the world and we have an opportunity to drive out the darkness, but we need to maintain a Christ-like balance.

Highlight: Reshaping the culture with light

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