Have you ever been inside one of those big limestone caves? Through the ages, water filtered down through limestone deposits. A chemical reaction occurred that produced an acidic solution. The acid carved enormous holes in the solid rock. Over time spectacular caverns were formed. All of this activity took place in absolute darkness. The existence of caves like these is unknown until some spelunker wiggles his way into an opening and flicks a flashlight switch or lights a candle. The darkness flees from the light. Light always chases the night away. What was once unknown, unseen,appears.
Read: Genesis 18:1-22:24, 2 Kings 4:1-37, Luke 1:26-38, 24:36-53, 2 Peter 2:4-11
In the passage from Genesis we are reading this week, God turned the light on for Abraham Two previously unknown future events were revealed. Within the year, Sarah would conceive and bear a son in her old age. They were to name him Isaac, which means laughter. That was the first “dark chaser.” Secondly, God told Abraham of His intention to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah. Abraham had already been told about his God-ordained role to be a blessing not only to his own family but also the whole world. Accordingly, Abraham appealed to God for His wrath to be withheld if just ten righteous people were found to live in the two cities of the plain. Sadly, they were not. Only Lot (Abraham’s nephew) and his family were spared, escaping the city just before it was destroyed by fire from the sky.
Sight Requires Light
One of the big themes of the Bible is the victory of light over darkness. This week’s portion from the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) is titled Vayera. It means “He Appeared.” God appeared at critical moments in the lives of Abraham and Sarah.
Abraham was born into the dark world of pagan idolatry. The world Abraham and Sarah knew still exists. It is all around us.
Satan is the prince of this world at this time. Our world is largely dominated by the demonic forces of Satan commands. Wherever Satan is, there is darkness. When God stepped into Abraham’s life, the night of his life was dispelled. Abraham was utterly unaware of the battle raging around him until God’s sudden appearance illuminated the truth.
When God appeared, Abraham believed. God reckoned Abraham’s and Sarah’s belief in Him as righteousness. In other words, they got saved! Throughout human history, God shows up repeatedly. Every time God appears, the darkness of this world melts away by His very presence. God is light!
The Bible Says
The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. – Genesis 1:2-3
The Lord was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night. He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people. – Exodus 13:21-22
Now Mount Sinai was all in smoke because the Lord descended upon it in fire. – Exodus 19:18
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. – Psalm 119:105
In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. – John 1:4-5
Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” – John 8:12
Talk About It
God never tires of shining light into darkness. It is His mission. Without His light, the world continues in absolute darkness. I am so grateful that God appeared to me and caused my darkness to flee. Light of the World, shine on! Let’s start a conversation. Discuss your ideas about the questions in the comment section below.
How concerned are you about the darkness of sin in the lives of the unredeemed people in your family, where you work, and even where you worship?
What is keeping you from telling the story of how God dispelled the darkness of sin in your own life to someone still living in darkness?
How are you equipping yourself to be a bearer of God’s light to the people God has placed in your sphere of influence?
The Big Question
Since Shavuot (Pentecost), when Jesus first sent the Holy Spirit to comfort and empower His followers, how does God appear in the increasingly dark world of the 21st Century?
God’s primary plan for chasing away the darkness of those so desperately blinded by spiritual darkness is the testimony and witness of those who have the Light. God appears to them in you and me, the disciples of Messiah Jesus. When we show up in the lives of those who need the Light, we need a flashlight, a match, or a candle. We need a tool that we are equipped to use at that time. That tool is knowledge of the Bible and God’s plan for everything.
If you already know the Bible and are comfortable teaching it to other, FANTASTIC. Go, shine the light everywhere. But, if you don’t have that knowledge and have no plan for getting it and sharing it with others, we have good news. We will help.