The Lamp of the Body

Reading the Word

Matthew 6:22–23 (ESV) — 22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, 23 but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

Understanding and Applying the Word

In today’s reading the body is described as a room that is illumined by a lamp. That lamp is the eye. We are told that if the eye is healthy, then the whole body will be full of light. What is this passage about? It is obviously not speaking of the eye being a literal lamp of the body. So, in what way is the eye a lamp?

The eye speaks of one’s focus or devotion. If a person is fixated on the right thing, the healthy thing, the whole person will thrive and prosper. In the context of the Sermon on the Mount, if a person has his eyes set on the values and ways of the kingdom, the whole person will be healthy. If there is something else that demands our attention, like wealth, power, fame, etc., our lives will be darkness. Jesus’ words are telling us to set our whole lives in pursuit of the kingdom of heaven. Anything else is not good for us. What are you focused on?

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