Sunday, September 25, 2011

Spiritual Light, Part 1


The picture at the top just kind of grabbed me as I saw the light streaming from the heavens down to the life in the valley and on the hillsides.  The trees and the grasses and the flowers need the light to process the nutrients taken in from the soil.  It’s said that a person can become depressed and morose by depriving them of light for a long enough period.  Light is important to life.  And, as I was looking at the picture, I thought of how true that is spiritually, too.  Let me explain.

The Bible mentions light 272 times, from Genesis to Revelation.  So, it must be important.  In most cases, it refers to one of several things:
  • God Himself,
  • Something done by God to bless, guide, lead or inform,
  • God’s life in us, usually in reference to our need to share that with others.
Let’s look at a few examples, just to get a feel for that.

The Israelites were finally freed from Egypt and Exodus 13:21 tells us, “And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night:”  God was their light to make it through the desert. 

Later, Psalm 27:1 says, “The LORD is my light and my salvation;” and Psalm 36:9 states, “For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.”  In the New Testament, “Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you.”  That’s John 12:35a and Jesus was referring to Himself before He went to the cross.  In each of these instances, God is light.

After creating the earth with land and water, the next thing was, “And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.”, in Genesis 1:3.  A few verses later, it says that God approved of the result and separated light and dark by making day and night. 

Before the Israelites left Egypt, Pharaoh and the Egyptians had to be convinced that it would be to their benefit if the Israelites could leave Egypt.  In order to do that, God created some plagues.  One of those included utter and total darkness.  To the point where people couldn’t even see their own hand in front of their face.  We read in Exodus 10:23, “They saw not one another, neither rose any from his place for three days: but all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.” 

Looking at Psalms, 18:28 says, “For thou wilt light my candle: the LORD my God will enlighten my darkness.” or 43:3, “O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.” or 74:16 telling us, “The day is thine, the night also is thine: thou hast prepared the light and the sun.”  God gave light to meet the needs of physical life, to bless and lead.  And to give the knowledge we need to realize how important He is to our life, temporal and eternal.

For now, think about the implications of those verses.  Next time. we’ll put all of this in perspective of God’s light in us and God being light in a very real and eternal sense.

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