Updated: Mar 8, 2021
By Rev Tan Eng Boo
“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works
and give glory to your Father who is in heaven”
Albert Barnes says, “Let your holy life, your pure conversation, and your faithful instructions, be everywhere seen and known. Always, in all societies, in all business, at home and abroad, in prosperity and adversity, let it be seen that you are real Christians.”
The whole purpose of a Christian life is to see God the Father glorified. True Christians act to glorify God so that people may see their conduct which is the testimony of their belief. Proverbs 27:19 reminds us of the source of what reflects our conduct- “As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart” (NIV). It is our heart. Who we are, will eventually be evident to others as our words and actions reveal our hearts.
“The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).
People are judged by what they say or do because these things reveal what is really in the person. Just watch the person’s action and speech. This is not being judgmental. This is being realistic. Christians have to be mindful of their testimony and it begins with the heart.
The heart, therefore, must firstly have a relationship with God. If not, you can’t be a testimony for Jesus. “let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water” (Hebrews 10:22). Holiness is not a matter of showing a good outward appearance. It is a matter of the heart.
I was a member of the Galilee football team when I was in my youth, playing the striker’s role. Playing matches against the football teams of fellow B-P Churches was a challenge. You get “tackled” really hard sometimes. How do you respond? Do you say “praise God” or “hallelujah for the tackle” as a reflection of your “holiness”? What does it mean when we say that your life should be a testimony for Jesus? It really means that your lifestyle and words must openly acknowledge a personal relationship with Jesus Christ which is readily seen by everyone. We testify that we know Jesus by our words and actions. That is how we reflect Christ in our lives. Do you have Jesus in your life?
Dear reader, are you a born-again believer in Jesus Christ? Jesus said, Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ (John 3:7). Come and “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved….” (Acts 16:31). In that way you can reflect your Christian life for Jesus always.
Secondly, Let your life be a reflection of Jesus pointing others back to God! When a believer wants to live his life as a testimony for Jesus, he will reflect the life-giving power of Christ in this dark world.
“The “good deeds” (Matthew 5:16) are practical acts of kindness and neighbourly love. A virtuous life gives light to all around us” (“The Sermon on the Mount: The Character of a Disciple” by Daniel M. Doriani).
We are often told to share our personal testimony of salvation, which we should, but a more powerful testimony would be our day to day living for Jesus wherever we may be. “Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ….” (Philippians 1:27). That “manner of life” is your conduct.
How should you conduct yourself as a Christian in an unbelieving world? I have heard of the wonderful Christian testimony of a youth in a non-Christian home which caused her grandparents’ hearts to be opened to the Gospel. This young person would have had difficulty in sharing the Good News to family members. However, she lived out in her daily contact with her family members, the instruction of this verse, “Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation” (1 Peter 2:12). God used her wonderful testimony to point her grandparents to Him. The world watches the Christian. Paul advised the Christian in his conduct:
“Likewise, urge the younger men to be self-controlled. Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us” (Titus 2:6-8).
Dear Father, help me to reflect Christ in my life and through my testimony, so that I may point someone back to You.