Light is of extreme importance to our Christian faith because it symbolizes the nature our holy God. It also signifies God’s presence and favor.
“For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6)
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:5)
The Jews historically experienced God’s nature through His light that often caused them great fear. The light that shown as an intolerable brightness is known to the Jews as the Shechinah, His eternal presence. Moses saw God’s light in the bush and the Jews were led by it in a pillar of fire and in a cloud that guided them in the desert. The Shechinah also appeared in the tabernacle and the temple.
Throughout the Bible, light has always been a symbol of holiness, goodness, knowledge, wisdom, grace, hope, and God’s revelation. God is not just a light or a kind of light; He is light itself. All light comes from Him. At the beginning of time, He created the light to dispel the darkness and chaos over all the earth. How fitting it is for our infinite and omnipotent God, to create light for us through the sun, moon, and stars by simply calling light into being.
“And God said, “Let there be light” and there was light. God saw that it was good and he separated the light from the darkness” (Genesis 1:3).
In the New Testament, “In him was life,” the prologue to the Gospel of John declares regarding Jesus, “and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in darkness; and the darkness has not understood it.” (John 1:4-5).
Darkness represents everything that is anti-God: the wicked (Proverbs 2:13), judgment (Exodus 10:21), and death (Psalm 88:12). The light that is God is the opposite of the darkness that is evil. The light of God is His holiness, righteousness, and goodness, in contrast to the darkness of evil and sin. Light is the essence of God. He is entirely, unreservedly, absolutely holy, with no sin, no iniquity, and no hint of injustice.
The light of God that appeared over the manger where Christ was born, was what the shepherds were following when they found Jesus, the Savior of the world, lying in a manger. That same Shechinah light, which means “dwelling of God,” guided the wise men almost two years later to come to worship Jesus in His house. The star was unusual because a typical star does not move in front of a person and stop.
Today, the importance of the light is that Jesus called His disciples and all of us who believe, to be light and light-bearers. Our light must shine before the world that they see might see Jesus in us and believe!
“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:13-16).
The light gives life which is critical for all of us especially in these times, with so much illness, abuse, sadness, anxiety and death. The good news about the Light is that it lights our way going forward, not what is behind us. Because God died for the sins of all people, He gives us to courage to forgive ourselves and others so that we can go forward in our journeys of loving God and loving others. With our focus on God, the darkness will begin to fade away and the love, joy and peace of God, will be ours.
For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light” (Ephesians 5:8).
Our future residency is in Heaven with God forever. It is a place where there is no darkness, sadness, bad memories, sickness and nor death. God, the light, with be with us forever!
“Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12).
“God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new” (Revelation 21:3-5).