In the Bible Jesus states, “I am the way, the truth, and the life”, in John 14:6. He also states in John8:12, “I am the light of the world”. John further writes, arguably one of his most notable Bible verses, in 1 John 4:8, “God is love”. So today’s quote is perfectly in line with the Bible, or is it Not?
“God is life, truth, light. He is love.” - Mahatma Gandhi
From a Christian perspective today’s quote is true and Biblical – yes God is life, yes God is truth, yes God is light and yes God is love. We see Him as the creator of the universe and the giver of life. We recognize Him as one and only true God, full of grace and truth. We do believe that Jesus is the Light of the world, that “in Him was life and the life was the light of men”. And lastly, for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son to take away the sin of the world.
So what’s the problem?
While Gandhi was a great man, and a man who changed the world through peace and love, when he refers to God he is not referring to the one true God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and Jesus Christ the Holy One of Israel. Gandhi was raised in a predominantly Hindu and Muslim county and tended toward Hinduism. He also adopted the philosophy of Jainism and developed an appreciation of the teachings of Jesus. In the end, he was a strong advocate and peaceful fighter for religious tolerance and accepted all people of all faiths.
So when Gandhi refers to God, he refers to whichever God you happen to believe in. But, when you consider the God of the Bible, then Gandhi’s quote rings true.
Here’s a good article on Gandhi from the BBC.
Here are some more Gandhi quotes.
Great sketch by Sagarpuro.
November 21, 2011 No Comments
Today’s quote sounds very eastern in origin, like Buddha or Krishna or perhaps some Samurai or Shaolin philosophy. I can almost hear Master Po saying to Kwai Chang Caine of Kung Fu fame, “Ahhh young grasshopper, remember, the light of the body is the eye”.
Actually, our Bible or Not quote for today comes from the words of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount.
The light of the body is the eye. - Matthew 6:22 KJV
In context, today’s quote is about focus and glorifying God. The light, or lamp, of the body is that which illuminates the body making it visible or lit up. Earlier in His sermon Jesus teaches to “let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven”. So how then is the light of the body the eye? Simple: we use our eyes to focus.
Within this 6th chapter of Matthew Jesus instructs His disciples to build up our treasures in Heaven and states, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” He then says His quote about the eye being the light of the body and bookends this concept with the quote, “No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.”
It’s about focus. If we focus on God, and serving Him above all else, our “eye” will be on Him. That will give our “body” light which will shine before mankind so that people may glorify God. If we focus on the things of this world, then our “eye” will be dark and thus fill our “body” with darkness which is sin.
“The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.” – Plato
“Because a man can see, he does not look.” — Master Po, Kung Fu
“Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” – Harry Potter
June 25, 2010 No Comments
Flash back to your childhood, were you one of those kids who were afraid of the dark? Maybe your parents tucked you in, or as you got older they sent you to bed, either way though…lights out, go to sleep. Hopefully you had parents who didn’t blame you but were compassionate and helped you through it. Any normal person would understand, yes, anyone can forgive a child who is afraid of the dark, as if it was some kind of offense in the first place. Nobody blames the kid.
Our quote for today is not a Bible quote, it’s a quote from the famous philospher Plato. He said:
“We can forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.” – Plato (428-c. 347 BC)
Although Plato was a pagan, this quote has a strong Christian message – sometimes we find God’s truth in unlikely places. His application of this metaphor was to illustrate his passion for learning. Plato placed great value in study and learning and likened the “dark” and the “light” to ignorance and knowledge. Similarly the scriptures use “dark” and “light” as types for evil and good. My favorite example of this is in the Gospel of John.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.” – John 1:1-5 KJV
This is exactly the same concept, howbeit not spiritual, that Plato was trying to illustrate. In Plato’s world, and in his mind, the tragedy is when men are afraid of the light. The thought that someone would prefer to live a life in ignorance, rather than be illuminated by the light of knowledge, was absolutely tragic.
The Apostle John opens up his gospel with the same sense of tragedy for those who do not accept the Life and the Light of the world, Jesus Christ. He opens with the divinity of Christ, the Alpha and the Omega, and describes Him as the Light that shines in the darkness. That darkness is a representation of the wicked, and the wicked did not comprehend the Light. The key to understanding this tragedy is in the understanding of the meaning of “comprehended it not”.
The word translated from the original Greek to “comprehended” is katalambanō (καταλαμβάνω) which means: to lay hold of so as to make one’s own, to seize upon, or take possession of. You see, the tragedy is not that there are some that do not understand the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the tragedy is that there are those who refuse to accept the Gospel.
We can forgive a child or anyone who, through immature ignorance, is afraid because of the dark. The real tragedy is when the Light shines among men as a free gift, and men refuse to lay hold of the Gift to make it their own.
What is your favorite “light” versus “dark” Bible verse? Please share.
May 7, 2010 2 Comments