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Soul Light

To some degree, what we have at the center of our attention has us.

Those words cannot be found in the Bible. But the idea behind them shows up from Genesis to Revelation.

Seems to me that one example surfaces in the words of Jesus when he said, “The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness. Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness” (Luke 11:34-35).

Here, the Teacher of teachers reminds us that, as a lamp is to a room, so the eye is to the body. Yet, Jesus uses “eye” not only in a physical sense but to represent the spiritual “attention of our heart” that determines how much light (and what kind of light) gets to our souls.

So why is Jesus taking the time to create word pictures for “the attention of our heart”?

The answer seems to be found in what the Son of God went on to say to religious leaders who, because of the attention of their hearts, saw others as objects to use, people to criticize, or followers to impress.

The immediate solution, according to Jesus, was to shift the attention of their “eye” so that the result would be to love others rather than using them (Luke 11:39-41).

So  some questions I’ve been thinking about are, “From our Teacher’s point of view, Where should our “eye” be? And how can we make sure that we are not just focusing externally on Jesus, the words of the Bible, others, or ourselves?

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16 Responses to “Soul Light”

  1. poohpity says:

    I really enjoy when I talk to someone to look in their eyes because it seems that they really are a reflection into their souls. Many meet that look and then turn their eyes away from you or look in many other directions but not back into your eyes. You can tell a lot about someone by their eyes and what their focus truly is on. You can see the beauty of a human soul by their gaze and I guess that would be them same as to their spiritual side as well.

    Just like someone’s use of the name of Jesus and the words of the bible they can be used for external purposes rather than an internal relationship with the Lord. It seems when we use them to point us to our own need then change and growth occur but when we use them to convict or show some else the nature of their wrongs we are on a very slippery slope to concentration on the external rather than a persons heart. That is shown in a persons eyes. It is so easy to only look at the external that takes so little effort.

    Our eye needs to be on Jesus by looking intently into what He truly is saying to us and then that light will be revealed through our eyes and along with the eyes it will be contained in our hearts which will be reflected in our behaviors. The eyes are a reflection of our soul.

  2. Regina says:

    Good Evening All,

    Mart – My first initial thoughts on your questions, “From our Teacher’s point of view, Where should our “eye” be?

    For your first question, some scripture references came to mind:

    1 John 2:16, NKJV
    For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the *lust of the eyes*, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.

    Our “eye” should be focused on doing God’s will, not on selfish desires or worldly (carnal) pursuits. Personally, I want my “carnal self” to decrease and my spiritual nature to increase. I want my will to be in alignment with God’s will for my life. Hebrews 12:1 (a favorite Bible verse) came to mind too.

    Luke 6:41-42, NLT
    “41) And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? 42) How can you think of saying, ‘Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye?”

    The LORD does not want us to pass judgment on sin in a fellow believer’s life because we’ve all sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23). That doesn’t mean that we can’t–lovingly and prayerfully–confront a brother or sister if we notice that he/she is doing something that we know is not pleasing to God. However, we should pray (ask God for help) before confronting the person. He (Jesus) doesn’t want us to be demeaning, controlling or critical of another believer (brother/sister) either.

    Galatians 6:1, NLT says,
    “Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.”

    For your second question, “And how can we make sure that we are not just focusing externally on Jesus, the words of the Bible, others, or ourselves?

    I think one way to tell if we’re just focusing “externally” on Jesus, the words of the Bible, etc. is if He asks us to do something or give up something (either for spiritual growth or on behalf of the Kingdom), and we’re not willing to do it.

    James 1:22 NKJV says, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only…”

    Jesus’ words should encourage and inspire us to treat people the way we want to be treated. Love is an action word; if we love someone, we’re gonna be willing to “do” good because of that love. My mind goes back to Jesus’ admonishment to love our neighbor as we love ourselves (Mark 12:31), and 1 Cor. 13 (the definition of “love”).

    If we’re only focused on our “external selves” or that of others, then we’re only gonna be interested in the “superficial” aspects of our lives and the lives of others (i.e. creature comforts, material possessions, job, etc.), things that don’t matter when compared to the condition of a person’s heart, mind and spirit.

    Some scripture references came to mind…
    2 Cor. 5:17, NKJV “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

    Matt. 16:26, NKJV, “For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”

    Jesus wants us to be “Kingdom minded” He wants us to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness” (Matt. 6:33), and all the other things (needs/wants) will be given to us.


  3. saled says:

    Wow. I always wondered about these verses, Luke 11:34 + 35, and never quite got it. Now I get it; we can shift (or focus)the attention of our heart (eye). Jesus is telling us to be careful that what we are focused on is truly light. John 1:9 mentions the true light. I’ll be doing a lot of thinking about this topic.

  4. Bob in Cornwall England says:

    “Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness”

    That is an interesting quote from Jesus Himself.

    Lucifer or satan is the angel of light and, like Eve, we can allow him to put thoughts and images into our minds that seem light and from God, yet that light can be darkness itself and pull us down.
    When I was waking up this morning I was praising God in my head and as I was dozing in and out os sleep I could hear the voice in my head praising God. But now it is fading and as the day moves on my head will get full of other less worthy stuff. I think we need to keep our “minds Eye” focussed at all times on praising God. Paul said “pray continually” and that is how we keep our eye focussed on the true Light of God and not on the dark light of satan and the world.


  5. foreverblessed says:

    I often wandered what this verse would mean. If Jesus talks to the Pharisees, I understand. But when we are His children, we are the children of light.
    Ephesians 5:8, Philipians 2:15
    So why would Jesus say that to me?
    Yesterdays evening meditation of Spurgeon was about this same theme:
    The evening and the morning were the first day
    Genesis 1:5
    ““Can I be a child of God while there is so much darkness in me?” Yes; for you, like the day, take not your name from the evening, but from the morning; and you are spoken of in the word of God as if you were even now perfectly holy as you will be soon. You are called the child of light, though there is darkness in you still. You are named after what is the predominating quality in the sight of God, which will one day be the only principle remaining.”

    WHat Bob says I tried to do more often during the day, focus on Jesus, and starts singing. It helps taking away dark (or irritable) thoughts, they seem less to come in too.
    (I like to comment on getting irritable in the last topic)

  6. SFDBWV says:

    I also like to look a person in the eye, an immediate connection is made between me and the other person, I might add I also like to hear the tone of voice and the physical movements of another in conversation….All of which is missed here on our blog.

    All of us have been in the presence of people who have a *Presence*. These people either have an over powering presence of a light or dark spirit.

    This is the light I believe Jesus is talking about… That seen, felt and understanding that connects with ones spirit that comes from looking into anothers eyes.

    It is a natural/supernatural ability we all possess.

    So what about people who are blind? Even have no eyes, from which to either look into anothers or be observed by another?

    They too can *see* with spiritual eyes the light that comes from another, is felt by being in their presence, and able to be understood and realized in the same way as any other.

    The person who can see is often *blinded* by glitz and glitter that the world places around a person, but the spiritual eye that is aligned with the Spirit of God in them is able to focus on the real soul light and not on the mask some attempt to present….discernment.

    So, we are after all naked and bare to the discerning eye of the Holy Spirit, the light that shines from us, is the nature of who we are, bare and uncovered.


  7. SFDBWV says:

    Interesting that Jesus says the we can change that light by shifting our focus from what we observe.

    I can see that if a person’s focus is on the outward beauty of another, that could be a doorway to lust or temptation…If I understand Genesis 3:6 correctly, what the woman *saw* was *pleasent to the eyes* and *desired*… this is lust, brought to the heart from that which the eye is focused upon.

    So we redirect our focus to the needs of others rather than our own desires…That becoming the light seen by others.

    As we allow Christ to have His way more and more in us, as our old nature becomes less and less present, more of the true light of Christ comes out from us, and we become that beacon on the hill that Christ wants us to be, aiding in drawing all to Him.


  8. SFDBWV says:

    foreverblessed….One of the things friends do for each other, is allow the other to vent…In the last topic I was in err to give you the immpression I was speaking to you directly.

    I appologize for that, it is a real appology and from my heart.

    As much as I enjoy being a part of the discussions that go on here, the inability to have a more eye to eye, personal connection is missing and I do get frustrated.

    I hope that I will do better in communicating to you as well as all, and never bring harm to anothers feelings.


  9. saled says:

    “Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness.” A good example of this is the husband as head of the wife topic that we previously discussed. When lived out as God intended, this principle is light. But when the man uses this for power and control over his wife, it becomes darkness. Or when the wife uses it to justify not being part of decisions that may be tough, it again becomes darkness. This is an example of focusing externally on the words of the Bible.

    Mart also asks how we can make sure we are not focusing externally on Jesus, others, or ourselves as well as the words of the Bible. I find it more difficult to wrap my mind around ways that we might misplace our focus in these areas. Could “talking the talk, but not walking the walk” be used to look at ourselves here? It is possible to look like you are ‘walking the walk’ and have it be only external also. So tough to discover even our own true motivations.

  10. marma says:

    Saled: Even as I was reading your post, the book of James came to mind. The reality of God’s Word and our faith should show in our actions and how we perceive the world and others.

    Romans 12 is helpful, too. Our perception is a mind thing. How we hear and see is filtered through our minds–the mind of Christ is something we have as we walk in the Spirit, not as we intellectually know God’s Word alone.

    Someone pointed out to me years ago that the Word of God is the Sword of the Spirit–not my Sword. It becomes mine when I am trying to wield it apart from the Spirit of God. Not that I haven’t done that, but the Lord is faithful to convict me when I do.

    We are learning and growing and imperfect in our understanding. We walk by faith not by sight, it is when I leave the path of faith that my eyesight dims the most.

  11. poohpity says:

    I think some times we fail with the Word of God by using it to light another’s path and not our own path. Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path”. That seems to be when it is so very external and controlling putting ourselves in the place of the Holy Spirit. I only know this because of the many times I have done it not with a feeling of superiority but to show someone they are not always as righteous as they think. Sometimes when I look in the mirror I do not like what I see and have to understand that we are all in process. The darkness can be over come with the light of the Spirit.

  12. SFDBWV says:

    The Beautiful Soul

    Tho no eye can see it
    It can be seen

    Tho you cannot touch it
    It can be felt

    Tho there is no substance
    it’s warmth is obvious

    Tho we be blinded by human eye
    Its glow illuminates all around us.

    I wrote that more than 20 years ago, I guess it was for this topic.


  13. SFDBWV says:

    One of the unending wonders about God, is that he can look into our eyes and see everything, every thing, wether hidden or open, known or unknown even to ourselves.

    Why we are where we are, and where we are headed.

    It is writen that no one can look upon the face of God and live…..

    I wonder who among all of us could look into Gods eyes and not see the pain and weight he carries. As well as our guilt.

    In Revelation (20:11) we read that at the great white throne of judgement, him that sat on the throne, whose face the earth and the heaven fled away…the light of God melts away all else.

    I believe sometimes that the reason Jesus disapeared from his enemies as he went about among them exposing their sin, that if they were to have gazed to intently into His eyes….even as blind as they were, they might have seen the truth and recognized Him…But He didn’t want to be recognized by them not yet.


  14. bubbles says:

    Psalm 139:23 “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts.”
    This verse seems to answer the question about how can we prevent ourselves from focusing more/externally on Jesus, the words of the Bible, others, or ourselves.
    It seems like it comes down to our motives or our hearts and minds again–just like the Pharisees who focused on the outward appearances {tombs that were externally lovely, but were filled with bones on the inside} Only the Lord knows our hearts completely. As David prayed the prayer of ‘search me’–we should be compelled to do this daily–that He may search our motives. It’s so easy to get caught up in something with wrong motives.
    Thank you, again, Mart for sharing your thoughts with us.

  15. Bob in Cornwall England says:


    Thank you for your little Poem.


  16. foreverblessed says:

    Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
    if we keep on doing that the Light will not become darkness.

    this song keeps ringing in my heart, you can listen to it on Youtube, some beautifull versions to hear.
    We live in faith in Him, He lives in us, and works through us. Marma wrote about it, so if you search your heart, it is wise to start to look wherein your faith is.
    (thanks Steve, all is well)

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