THE LIGHT OF A LANTERN
I have this morning a number of lanterns, boys and girls, and I want to show them to you. There are different kinds of lanterns, aren't there? Have you seen one like this before? This one requires a little bit of. oil in the inside and it has a nice wick. This one is rather, old, as you can tell. The third one here is called a battery operated lantern. It gives off a lot of light too because of its reflector. You see the reflector around this bulb? Lanterns are very important, especially if you are out in the middle of nowhere. That is the place to have a lantern, isn't it?
When people are camping lanterns are very important to guide and direct them, but if a person had to go a great distance from camp to another, for example, and there were many treacherous places where one had to walk perhaps briars, branches, bushes and stones on the ground over which you might trip; or holes in the ground you might step into, a lantern would be a very important thing to have.
Equally important would be having a good lantern, but all lanterns are not good. For instance, this one lantern that I hold is one that does not even operate, so it would do one no good to have a lantern like this. These lanterns at one time had to be purchased, and once purchased they must be filled with oil. If they are not filled, they are not good.
Boys and girls, we have been purchased by a price. Jesus paid a very high price. He paid His life as a price for us, and once purchased, we need to fill ourselves with God's Spirit, like the lantern being filled with oil.
Ephesians 5:18 reads, "...be filled instead with the Holy Spirit, and controlled by Him."
I Corinthians 6:20, "For God has bought you with a great price. So use every part of your body to give glory back to God because He owns it."
In Matthew 25 we have the story of some ladies who are awaiting a very important event to occur. It was going to happen at night time, so five of these ladies brought extra oil for their lanterns while the other five just brought their lanterns with no extra oil. The oil ran out that was in the lanterns, consequently those who had extra oil were very wise individuals. I hope you are very wise by keeping your life filled with things of the Church.
In the lanterns that require oil for burning, the wick is very important. It has to be kept clean. Our soul has to be cleansed and washed so we might really perform as God would want us to perform.
Now the purpose of a lantern is to illumine. Philippians 2:15 says, "So that no one can speak a word of blame against you, you are to live clean, innocent lives as children of God in a dark world full of people who are crooked and stubborn. Shine out among them like beacon lights."
We are told in God's word that to shine as lights in the world. Now, there are many things that cause our light to be dimmed, and this is not good. But if we will pray, we will strengthen our light.
Did you know, boys and girls, that the Bible has been compared to this lantern? In one hand I hold the Bible and in the other hand I hold a lantern. The Bible tells us in psalm 119:105 that the Bible or the Word "is a lamp unto my feet." Now watch this, boys and girls, I take this lantern and I will carry it in front of me as I walk back and forth. Now pretending this is the night, it would show me how to go. Now see what I will do. I take God's Word, the Bible, and I hold it before me and I walk with it. It guides me, boys and girls, because it certainly directs me, and it is a light unto my path.
I hope, boys and girls, that all of you will read your Bibles every day and let it truly be a light to your path. Amen.
There are things that we do that the results are seen in the future. Depend on what God has said. The things that we do wrong will be discovered. Amen.
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