LIGHT in darkness
God has always been the Bringer of Light. Where He is present, there is light. In the beginning, God’s marvelous work of creation began with light: “And God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light. God saw that the light was good” (Gen. 1:3-4). But man’s sin brought darkness, the very deepest darkness. Such profound darkness that human hearts cannot see at all. We think we can see but our eyes are actually blind to the truth. It is impossible to find our own way to God. Our hearts are scared of the light and so we settle for living in death’s shadow.
But then came the first Christmas. In a small Bethlehem manger, a flicker of magnificent light began to shine and would not be put out. “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned” (Is. 9:2). God didn’t forget about His people in darkness. In the birth of Jesus, light came as a person–Literal Light. Just as in creation: Let there be Light! “God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with Him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus, His Son, purifies us from all sin” (1 Jn. 1:5-7, emphasis mine).
Oh come, let us walk in the Light.
LIGHT in prophecy
Hundreds of years before Jesus’ birth, prophets told of His coming. Words of light piercing through the darkness of their day–a promise of coming hope. They spoke words of assurance that God had not forgotten them. What a joy it must have been for Zechariah, a Jewish priest and Jesus’ uncle, when he realized they were living in the midst of prophecy-come-true. He said: “[God] has raised up a horn of salvation for us . . . (as He said through His holy prophets of long ago) . . . because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace” (Lk. 1:69-70, 78-79).
The compassionate kindness of God sent the Rising Sun of Heaven to those living in death’s shadow. He is a light to guide our feet to peace. “For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given . . . And He will be called . . . Prince of Peace” (Is. 9:6). Still today, the words of the prophets give us assurance that God will keep His promise. He said He would send the Light to save, and He did. He says He will be with us, and He is. He says He will come again, so He will.
“And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts” (2 Pet. 1:19, emphasis mine).
Oh come, let us pay attention to the Light.
LIGHT in the Word
When you sit down to read your Bible tomorrow morning, squint and look real close. You just might catch a glimpse of light spilling out. Oh, if only we could see the supernatural light flooding our souls as we read God’s Word–I think we would be astounded.
What does the Word and light have to do with Jesus and Christmas? They are all connected! We read that Jesus is the Word made flesh–the very breath and communication of God in human skin, born as a baby. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. . . . The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us” (Jn. 1:1, 14).
Jesus is our light and He is the Word. Similarly, the Word of Scripture is also a light. The Psalmist wrote: “Your [W]ord is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path” (Ps. 119:105). As we read and study God’s Word, the light of Jesus Christ is revealed to us, exposing our sin and need for a Savior. But we aren’t left there–God’s Word also illuminates the way for salvation. As we immerse ourselves in Scripture year after year, the light increases in our hearts with deeper realization of our depravity, clearer understanding of the gospel and rich gratitude for the way of grace opened up through the cross of Jesus. “He [Jesus] is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and His name is the Word of God” (Rev. 19:13).
Jesus. Light. Word. Jesus is light. The light is the Word. The Word is Jesus. Incredible!
Oh come, let us know the Light.
Click HERE to read Christmas Light–Part 2.
PS: Christmas photos from my dear friend, Christina Schenke.