What about...Light in the D?
Updated: Apr 6, 2021
Welcome to Light in the D Studios! My name is John Irvine, and I’m the creator and host of Light in the D and the co-host of The MessyMen Podcast.
This is the first blog that I’ll title, "What about...________?" What about, what? Fill in the blank. There are plenty of topics I’ll cover on the Light in the D video/podcast show, as there's certainly no shortage of topics we can discuss these days.
As for Light in the D Studios, the site will be home to a variety of original shows developed to help build God's Kingdom through Christ-centered and spiritually uplifting videos and podcasts. I'm excited to be working with content collaborators including my friend Jon Huegli who will be launching his own podcast soon, as well as my friend and MessyMen co-host, Kevin Rem.
For the purpose of this "blog", I wanted to share with the audience and you the reader “What about...Light in the D?” That is, what is this video podcast all about? And who are you, John Irvine? Why should I listen to anything you have to say?
Who am I?
I'm a Christian. A sinner, who in 2012 was saved by God's grace and mercy alone. A follower and disciple of Jesus Christ. I believe Jesus Christ is Savior, is Lord, and he is King.
Prior to 2012, I had never read the Bible, I really didn't know much about Jesus, other than we celebrated his birth at Christmas, and he apparently rose from the dead which is why we celebrate Easter. Up until 42-years of age, I really didn't know what any of that really meant or mattered. As for a belief in God, I wasn't an atheist, but I considered myself agnostic.
Between about 2007 and 2011, I had been going through a rough period in my life filled with anxiety and stress, and a sudden sense of my own mortality. Still, I didn't believe I was a sinner. I thought "sin" was just the way churches would guilt people into giving them money.
I'd always thought I was a good person, yet between 2007 and 2011 deep inside I was becoming increasingly aware of the terrible things I'd done in my past. My selfishness. My greed. My lustful desires. It was all beginning to gnaw at me. I found myself drinking more heavily to compensate for those thoughts. Further, I started having a heightened view of seeing the world as it really is...REALLY messed up. I found myself asking more and more, "why can't we humans get along?" I was feeling lost and hopeless more and more each day.
Then a strange thing happened in January 2012. I had heard the Gospel, sitting in church like so many times before. But this time something was different. It "clicked." It suddenly all made sense. The reason for all my fears, my guilt, shame, the horrible things I'd done. I was a sinner. We all are. It made sense to me as to what is evil, and what is truly good. In my sin, I was separated from a Holy God, and deserving of judgment and punishment. There was nothing I could do to save myself from the punishment I deserved. And that's bad news. What I needed, and what we all need, is a Savior. The answer is found in the Gospel! And that is good news!
If you are reading this and have not heard or understood the Gospel, the "good news," allow me to take a moment to share with you Theologian and Pastor John Piper's 6 point summary of the Gospel, with some of my own commentary for which I believe helps understand it.
Why did God create us?
1) God created us for his glory.
(Isaiah 43:6–7). “Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the end of the earth, everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory” God made all of us in his own image so that we would image forth, or reflect, his character and moral beauty.
How are we supposed to live?
2) Therefore every human should live for God’s glory.
“Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). The way to live for the glory of God is to love him (Matthew 22:37), trust him (Romans 4:20), be thankful to him (Psalm 50:23), obey him (Matthew 5:16), and treasure him above all things (Philippians 3:8; Matthew 10:37). When we do these things we image forth God’s glory.
But here’s the problem. Why there is so much wrong, hate, evil, corruption in the world...
3) we have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.
“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). “Although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him . . . and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images” (Romans 1:21–23). None of us has loved or trusted or thanked or obeyed or treasured God as we ought.
We don’t honor God or worship Him. We honor and worship ourselves. We think we are god.
Sin is a serious deal. We take it lightly or don't believe it exists at all. Before I became a Christian, I did my best to avoid going to church, because for me it was in this place they constantly talked about sin, you're a sinner, making you feel guilty...I’d think to myself I’m not a sinner, I’m a good person.
The truth is, sin runs deep in all of us. It's in our nature. If you believe you are a "good person," righteous and pure, ask yourself...would you allow a cable to be plugged into your mind that would share your every thought? Every impure thought, horrible deed, lie you ever told, gossip, hate in your heart for someone who disagrees with you, every slanderous thing, lustful, sexual thoughts towards another other than your spouse, you name it...would you want everyone, your spouse, family, friends, co-workers to know your every thought?
I doubt any of us would. Why? Because it would expose us. None of us, not one is righteous nor can stand before God on our own righteousness. Not by His standards. We all have evil tendencies in our sinful hearts. And our hearts are deceitful.
What is evil?
In its simplest definition, it is anything that contradicts the holy nature of God. We lie, we steal, we disrespect and dishonor our parents, we cheat, commit adultery, we covet what others have; evil committed towards God is unbelief in Him, it is idolatry, and it is blasphemy.
Because we have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory...
4) we all deserve eternal punishment.
“The wages of sin is (eternal) death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Those who did not obey the Lord Jesus “will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might” (2 Thessalonians 1:9). “These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life” (Matthew 25:46).
That’s the BAD news. But there is hope, and there is GOOD NEWS! God’s amazing grace and mercy.
5) Yet, in his great mercy, God sent his only Son Jesus Christ into the world to provide for sinners the way of eternal life.
“God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us” (Galatians 3:13). “Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18).
God came down in the flesh, to live among us in his son Jesus Christ, who suffered with us, and in HIS GREAT LOVE, he paid the penalty for what we are due on the Cross! Jesus Christ, the Messiah, willingly lived among us, suffered and died on a cross, died, and was buried to pay our penalty. Here's the really good news, he conquered death and rose from the tomb so for those who believe, we may be reconciled to God and have eternal life.
This is God's amazing grace.
6) Therefore eternal life is a free gift to all who will trust in Christ as Lord and Savior and supreme Treasure of their lives.
“Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31).
“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9).
“By grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Ephesians 2:8–9).
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).
“I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ” (Philippians 3:8).
If you’re not a believer in Jesus Christ, that is, if you’ve never repented for your sins and trusted in Christ’s death and resurrection for your eternal salvation, are you concerned that the Bible says there is a doom that awaits you – an eternal judgment?
If you want to better understand who Jesus Christ is and what you must do to be saved, I'd love to talk to you and point you to resources to help answer your questions. Please write to me in the comments.
Okay, now. What about ...Light in the D?
1 Peter 2:9 teaches us who we are as believers…”you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”
Jesus teaches his disciples in Matthew 28:18-20 “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
As Christians, that’s our call and our duty to our Lord and Savior.
My hope for Light in the D is this, in a world darkened by sin, to put a light on those Brothers and Sisters of the Christian faith who are living for Christ, and open to share and witness the transformative power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in their lives. Let's be an encouragement by our witness to others who are lost and seeking hope. Let us live boldly and courageously in our faith. The Word of God is our armor, and the Holy Spirit will protect us who believe, no matter the cost.
On the Light in the D video/podcast, I'll have guests, and from time to time make recommendations of other video podcasts, books, and blogs from heroes of mine in the Christian faith.
Recently I was inspired by two of them, John Cooper and Alisa Childers who appeared on John’s podcast, Cooper Stuff - who both said (I'm paraphrasing) "Christians need more boots on the ground" in news media and in entertainment.
I couldn’t agree more. That’s why I'm doing Light in the D and helping to create Light in the D Studios as a platform for Christian-based content.
The truth is, in the United States we are living in times unlike we’ve ever seen before. We hear the stories of Christians being persecuted in other parts of the world. But now, it's approaching our doorstep. Just north of us in Canada, a Pastor was jailed for doing what God called him to do. Pastor James Coates. If you haven’t heard the story, look him up.
The days of living comfortably as a Christian, living out our faith freely without being called bigots, haters, and intolerant are long gone. Living out our Christian faith will come at a cost. We should not be surprised. Jesus warned us it would. Read 1 Peter, in which Peter writes Christians why and how they should live their faith under persecution.
We are rapidly seeing our freedoms evaporate in the United States. And I certainly do not want to see them go. But Christians, our faith in Christ is not dependent on those freedoms. We were slaves to sin, but are no longer. Our freedom is in Christ. No one, no person, no government can take that away.
Dr. Erwin Lutzer of Moody Church said this, "It is not necessary to have freedom to be faithful, as the martyrs throughout the centuries have proven. We need to begin to focus on the Gospel. On Holy living. On prayer. On witnessing and to know we can learn to be strong now because I believe the time is coming it will be absolutely necessary if we intend to survive with our reputation and witness intact."
I’ll end this “What About…” blog post on this note:
Christians, we need more boots on the ground proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ! Light in the D, and our home at Light in the D Studios, is just one of the many and growing boots on the ground Christian soldiers out there using this medium to proclaim the truth in a dark, chaotic world.
I hope you’ll join me in this journey of Light in the D by subscribing to our Youtube Channel and podcast.
Thanks for reading, watching, and listening.