Imagine sitting in complete darkness.

Most of us have never confronted true darkness. We see its creeping shadows at the edges of our modern world, yet rarely held its prisoner for more than a moment. Streetlights hold back the night while lamps chase away the gloom. Darkness today is vaguely uncomfortable, a forgotten dread where seldom do we feel its full weight. This was not always the case.

In Genesis 1:2-3, the universe existed in total darkness. Complete and absolute. There was no substance to the ever-present blackness, its identity wholly defined by the absence of light.

Into this void of nothing God spoke, His breath radiating into the world as light. Light is the seed of creation, something into the nothing. Light brings beauty. Light provides perspective. Without it, life is impossible.

LIGHT ORIGINATED IN GOD AND CANNOT EXIST APART FROM HIM.

Sin plunged man back into the emptiness, cutting us off from the Source. Sin’s penalty is death and darkness. Man now lives in the fading glow of creation, alive for a brief moment, yet born into spiritual darkness. We exist as a mere shadow of what was, a faint memory of what could have been.

In John 1:1-4, mankind existed in darkness. There was no real substance in the ever-present spiritual blackness. Man’s identity lost in the absence of God’s light.

Into this void of nothing God once again spoke. This time His Word entered the world as a man. Jesus is the Seed of the new creation. Instead of sin’s darkness, He is the light of the world (John 8:12). Rather than sin’s curse of death, His light is the life of men.

With this in mind, consider the profound implications of Matthew 5:14, “You are the light of the world.” If Jesus had not spoken it, we’d consider His words heresy. We introduced the darkness into God’s creation, what right do we have to claim the title “light,” the very name reserved for the Savior?

Jesus became a light source amid a dark world. When we received His Spirit within us, we too became a light source. Darkness has no power over the light. They are not equals, in fact, darkness only exists in light’s absence. The only way to stop the light is to cover it up or turn it off.

Let’s represent Jesus to the nations of the earth. Let’s illuminate the people groups and tribes that live in spiritual darkness. Let’s light up our campus, workplace and neighborhood. The darkness cannot stop us. But if we aren’t careful, we can be covered up, smothered by the busyness and distractions of the world around us.

One light effortlessly dispels the darkness around it. Never minimize the impact you can make, even if you walk the path alone. Those living in the surrounding gloom will be drawn in, ultimately becoming lit up themselves.

AND MANY LIGHTS TOGETHER BECOME A CITY ON A HILL THAT CANNOT BE HIDDEN.

No amount of darkness can cover it up, its light completely transforming all that is around. Let’s commit today never to take for granted the deposit within us, and let’s let our light shine in the darkness.

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:

  • Where does the fear of darkness keep you from shining the light of the Gospel?
  • What can you do to shift your focus off the emptiness of the darkness and onto the light of Jesus?
  • Identify places of influence God has given you—your job, your class, your neighborhood, etc. What steps can you take to shine the light in these places? As a starting place, consider praying for individual people by name and finding opportunities to share your testimony.
  • What opportunity do you have to take the light of the Gospel into some place of darkness around the world?

By Drew Steadman – Adult Pastor